Claude MORAES : Written explanations of vote 

Members can submit a written explanation of their vote in plenary. Rule 183

Listing the third countries whose nationals must be in possession of visas when crossing the external borders and those whose nationals are exempt from that requirement, as regards the UK's withdrawal from the EU (A8-0047/2019 - Sergei Stanishev)  
 

The vote to exempt British travellers from visa requirements was always going to secure a large majority in the European Parliament, so there was no danger of visa charges being introduced at this stage. However, British MEPs of all political parties opposed the inclusion of inaccurate and politically motivated references about the status of Gibraltar, which could potentially open up the visa exemption regime to legal challenge in the future.
I was the original rapporteur on this file and was removed specifically as a result of one country being determined to usurp the EU institutional processes for a domestic political point. It is damaging to the Parliament and the EU as a whole that this was allowed to happen.
Sadly, this is a clear example showing how much harder it will be for Britain to influence EU rule-making from the outside – even when those rules have a direct impact on British people.

Waste management (B8-0231/2019)  
 

This resolution follows a large number of petitions received by the PETI committee on various health and environmental problems linked to the failure of Member States to implement waste legislation.
The strong mobilisation of youth around the world only confirms that we have to take our responsibility and solve the climate change crisis. Now it is time to act. Therefore, Labour MEP voted in favour of this resolution stressing the need for Member States to do more to address waste management problems, calling on the EU to better enforce waste legislation and setting out clear recommendations to do so.

Enforcement requirements and specific rules for posting drivers in the road transport sector (A8-0206/2018 - Merja Kyllönen)  
 

Labour MEPs backed the cross-party deal on the so-called Mobility Package, which includes new rules on posting of drivers; working and resting time, and cabotage.
Our aim is to improve the well-being of 3.6 million professional drivers in Europe. The S&D Group made continuous efforts to strike the right balance between protecting workers’ rights and safety and leaving enough room for enterprises to thrive, especially SMEs.
On the application of new posted worker rules to the road sector, the report includes new rules giving the same remuneration as local workers that should apply from a driver’s very first day of work in another country. That, with the exception of those trips that start and end in the driver’s country of origin.

Daily and weekly driving times, minimum breaks and rest periods and positioning by means of tachographs (A8-0205/2018 - Wim van de Camp)  
 

Labour MEPs backed the cross-party deal on the so-called Mobility Package, which includes new rules on posting of drivers; working and resting time, and cabotage.
Our aim is to improve the well-being of 3.6 million professional drivers in Europe. The S&D Group made continuous efforts to strike the right balance between protecting workers’ rights and safety and leaving enough room for enterprises to thrive, especially SMEs.
New rules adopted on driving and rest time are a real victory for drivers and unions. According to the report, drivers should be allowed to return home every 4 weeks at the latest, and that weekly rest must be spent away from the vehicle. This is another step towards better work-life balance for our workers, better rest conditions and safer roads and passengers in Europe. The report also provides for a rapid introduction of the smart tachograph - a device that measures compliance with driving time limits - on all passenger and freight vehicles, ten years ahead of the deadline decided back in 2014! Posting of workers rules and cabotage will thus be easier to control as this newest type of tachograph will register the position of the vehicle and driver every 3 hours of cumulated driving time.

Adapting to development in the road transport sector (A8-0204/2018 - Ismail Ertug)  
 

Labour MEPs backed the cross-party deal on the so-called Mobility Package, which includes new rules on posting of drivers; working and resting time, and cabotage.
Our aim is to improve the well-being of 3.6 million professional drivers in Europe. The S&D Group made continuous efforts to strike the right balance between protecting workers’ rights and safety and leaving enough room for enterprises to thrive, especially SMEs.
On cabotage – that is when a vehicle from another country carries out pick-ups and deliveries inside another member state – the report provides for stricter rules that will foster fair competition on domestic markets. Cabotage will only be allowed 3 days at a time, and the vehicle involved will then have to spend 60 hours in the member state where their company is registered. This will reinforce transparency and workers’ rights by effectively tackling letterbox companies.

Common rules for the internal market for natural gas (A8-0143/2018 - Jerzy Buzek)  
 

. ‒ The EU’s gas demand is around 480 billion m3, but the EU can only produce less than half of this gas, so the rest is imported from third countries. Supply security is crucial for the EU’s energy security and for the competitiveness of its industry, and this requires diversification and legal certainty for investment in pipelines.
Even though fossil fuels will gradually be phased out in the EU, the reality is that natural gas currently represents around a quarter of the Union’s overall energy consumption, and its supply must be guaranteed.
Labour MEPs voted in favour of the revision of the Gas Directive, which will bring the provisions on third-country pipelines into line with EU competition rules, contribute to the creation of a truly integrated internal gas market and, in general, bring more transparency and security with regard to gas supply.

Strengthening the security of identity cards and of residence documents issued to Union citizens (A8-0436/2018 - Gérard Deprez)  
 

. ‒ Ensuring that identity documents are tamper- and fraud-proof is a key element in the fight against terrorism and organised crime.
Throughout these negotiations we have engaged constructively and have managed to ensure key safeguards to protect citizens’ privacy. However, we could not support a final agreement pushed by the Council that made it mandatory for governments to collect and store fingerprints on all new ID cards.
Even though this regulation would not apply to the UK – since it only applies to Member States already issuing ID cards to their nationals, Labour MEPs voted against this report as this is an intrusive and unnecessary requirement and a clear redline for us.

Work-life balance for parents and carers (A8-0270/2018 - David Casa)  
 

Labour MEPs voted in favour of this report, which will give people the choice to shape their lives: raise children, take care of elderly family members, share domestic tasks and pursue a career.
This is one of the most important achievements of this parliamentary term and the first legislative file from the European Pillar of Social Rights. As a consequence of S&D’s constant pressure over the past five years, millions of Europeans can soon benefit from rules to better balance work and family: Ten paternity days for fathers, four months for each parent parental leave from which two months are not transferable which therefore ensures that both partners can spend time with their child, and five days a year for all workers to take care of their relatives or people in their household.
It is a matter of gender equality as it will unburden mothers and put an end to the gender pay gap.
This is also a huge step towards the more social and sustainable Europe that we fight for and a loud and clear answer to populists and nationalists who try to play on people’s fears.

European Social Fund Plus (ESF+) (A8-0461/2018 - Verónica Lope Fontagné)  
 

Investing in people and ensuring nobody is left behind is paramount to us in the Labour Party. We want to ensure that children, young people and those most in need suffering from material deprivation are being taken care of and provided with equal opportunities to reach their potential.
Therefore, Labour MEPs voted in favour of this report to increase the budget dedicated to youth, social inclusion, the most deprived and the capacity building of social partners and civil society organisations.
Our Group has also put forward a new instrument within the European Social Fund to tackle the multidimensional aspects of child poverty: the European Child Guarantee with a dedicated budget of EUR 5.9 billion.

Temporary reintroduction of border control at internal borders (A8-0356/2018 - Tanja Fajon)  
 

Labour MEPs voted in favour of this report reconfirming the EP position on the need for the establishment of clear rules with regards to the reintroduction of internal borders in the Schengen area in the in the event of a serious threat to the public order or to internal security.
Currently, several Schengen states have been misusing and misinterpreting existing rules and carrying out controls at internal borders lasting more than three years, despite a two-year maximum period, therefore putting the Schengen system at risk.

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