Local view for "http://purl.org/linkedpolitics/eu/plenary/2006-03-23-Speech-4-166"

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"Mr President, I have abstained from the vote on the present Bushill-Matthews report because I disagree with some of its recommendations. Recital 70 on immigration policy springs to mind, although I have to confess, incidentally, that even this recital contains a phrase that is remarkably nuanced for this House. Admittedly, this report is actually relatively even-handed and, if nothing else, has the merit of once again placing the demographic problem of Europe on the agenda. What I do not find in this report, though, is the conclusion that very many parents today still opt voluntarily in favour of staying at home and decide in favour of the family, and that probably many more people would take that option should this be made financially viable by the government. In this connection, my group has for a long time argued in favour of fully-fledged parent wages, including social security and accrual of pension rights for the parent staying at home and looking after under-age children. I am convinced that this measure could also go a long way towards providing an answer to the enormous demographic challenge which we are currently facing."@en1

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