Labour MEP: Govt should stop whining and use existing powers to clamp down on benefit abuse

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Responding to today's ECJ ruling on migration and benefits, Labour's European spokesperson for Employment and Social Affairs, Siôn Simon MEP, called on the government to use existing powers to clamp down on abuse, and stop claiming nothing can be done.

He said:

"I welcome today’s ECJ ruling denying benefits to migrants who come to the UK expressly to claim benefits. It demonstrates yet again the dishonesty of UKIP claims that EU member states have no power to manage such matters.

"Nor is there any evidence for the existence of “benefit tourism” on any widespread scale. It is a Tory-UKIP myth, invented and peddled for the sake of their own political ends, with no regard for the truth or the social fabric of the UK.

"Most people who come to Britain do so to work hard and contribute to the UK tax system. For the few who seek to abuse our freedoms, today’s ruling demonstrates what has always been the case: strong powers already exist to prevent that.

"Both Germany and Belgium are already using such powers; this weak Tory-led government needs to get a grip and do the same."

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