MEPs Complain of British Ministers' Treatment of Bulgarian, Romanian Workers
European socialists from Bulgaria and Romania have sent a letter to European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso on access to the UK labor market by citizens of the two countries.
The letter is endorsed by Hannes Swoboda, Chair of the Group of the Progressive Alliance of Socialists and Democrats in the European Parliament, according to the press office of Bulgarian MEP Ivaylo Kalfin.
"We are facing the danger of citizens of the newest Member States being prevented from exercising their rights guaranteed to them by EU treaties," says a letter of the leaders of the Bulgarian and Romanian delegation in the Group of Socialists and Democrats in the European Parliament Ivaylo Kalfin and Catalin Ivan to the EC President.
"What is more, we believe that a wave of hostile statements since the beginning of the year aims to stigmatize these citizens as a second-class Europeans who pose a threat to the social systems just because they want to exercise their basic rights to free movement and work," the MEPs say.
The MEPs find that the statements of British Ministers on the anticipated wave of immigrants from the two newest EU Member States after the lifting of labor market restrictions in the UK at the end of 2013 are based on false premises and contradict ample evidence of the EC and the experience of EU countries where restrictions have already been dropped.
"We are worried that the current labor market restrictions may not be lifted from January 1, 2014, because we hear statements of representatives of the British government sounding a false alarm about the danger of a Romanian-Bulgarian invasion which will destabilize British society," the letter says.
Ivaylo Kalfin, Catalin Ivan, and Hannes Swoboda insist that the EC announce the measures it will take to prevent the risk of certain countries breaching the deadline and keeping their labor markets closed to Bulgarian and Romanian workers after the expiration of the transitional periods on December 31, 2013.
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