Thursday, 22 April 2010

UKIP and reciprocal agreements

I was listening to Radio 4's World at One on Tuesday and I heard Lord Pearson speaking on the leaders's election call section of the programme. As the leader of UKIP he took questions from listeners and one person phoned in from Tours. The caller asked if the plans to leave the EU had taken into consideration the effect on the couple of million British citizens in Europe.

He asked about the reciprocal health agreements with the EU as well as the right to live and work in Europe. These rights could easily be removed if Britain left the EU. What would UKIP do if several million people returned to Britain and needed help with things like housing, health and social care. The reply was that this "really isn't the picture at all". If we left the EU then nothing would change.

The caller was not reassured by the answer and neither am I. Take the reciprocal health agreement. This costs Europe much more than it costs us. I have no doubt that it would go. No more E111. If you don't believe me then look what Britain has done to the Isle of Man and the Channel Islands. The reciprocal health agreement costs us money so Gordon Brown got rid of it. If you are going to these islands on holiday then do check your holiday insurance.

Lord Pearson thinks it is in the interest of Europe to leave the reciprocal health agreements in place. He is wrong.

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