#Halifax and #Hebden Bridge take part in Europe-wide day of action to stop Big Bad Treaty

On Saturday October 11th, scores of local people staffed information stalls in Halifax Town Centre and Hebden Bridge, to alert the public to the corporate power grab disguised as a transatlantic trade and investment treaty, that is currently being negotiated between the European Union and the USA.

Halifax Stop TTIP stall -Photo: Roger O'Doherty

The treaty – called the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) – would give American corporations power over British legislation – but the UK government is fully committed to signing up to it.

Campaigners from both 38 Degrees and the World Development Movement ran the stalls, informing members of the public about how to contact Yorkshire and Humberside MEPs and ask them to vote against the Treaty becoming law.

Here are the MEPs’ contact details.

Members of the public can also sign the European Citizens’ Initiative, calling on the institutions of the European Union and its member states to stop the negotiations with the USA on the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) and not to ratify the Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA) with Canada.

The 11 October Stop TTIP stalls in Halifax and Hebden Bridge follow an earlier day of action in Hebden Bridge in the summer.

Stop TTIP -Hebden Bridge. Photo: Kim Saville

The Treaty hands American Corporations the power to sue our government if our laws reduce their profits

TTIP will allow American corporations to sue the British government for any activity that
they believe obstructs their ability to trade in Britain. For instance if the government introduced plain packaging on cigarettes, under TTIP American tobacco companies could sue the government for affecting their profits.

TTIP Tug of war - corporate profits v public services. Photo: Roger O'Doherty

Gobsmacked about extent of TTIP

More than 300 actions took place across the UK on October 11th, along with over 400 more across mainland Europe.  Calderdale Stop TTIP campaigners joined the Europe-wide day of action to spread the word about the Treaty, as most people are totally unaware of what it is or that it is about to be signed.

Jane Rendle, one of the Halifax protestors said,

“I was gobsmacked when I realised the extent of TTIP. Everything we care about from the NHS to the environment will be much harder to protect when this treaty is signed. It is a frackers’ charter. Even the courts that rule on breaches of the treaty will be held in secret and corporate lawyers,not British judges, will make the decisions. This gives away an astonishing amount of power to big business. Government should not be allowed to do that.”

Another campaigner, Mike Huett, said,

“I was amazed to learn that this Treaty could make it impossible to reverse the privatisation of the NHS. I am really proud to be part of a Europe-wide action on TTIP.”

MEPs’ current positions on TTIP

Here is a summary of Yorkshire and Humberside MEP’s current positions on key parts of
TTIP (the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership treaty between the European
Union and the USA)

Against corporations suing governments?

  • Yes: Linda McAven & Richard Corbett(Lab)
  • No: Timothy Kirkhope (Con)
  • On the fence: Jane Collins, Amjad Bashir, Mike Hookem (UKIP)

Against letting the NHS and other public services be carved up?

  • Yes: Linda McAven & Richard Corbett(Lab)
  • No: Timothy Kirkhope (Con)
  • On the fence: Jane Collins, Amjad Bashir, Mike Hookem (UKIP)

Against TTIP as a whole?

  • No: Timothy Kirkhope (Con)
  • On the fence: Jane Collins, Amjad Bashir, Mike Hookem (UKIP),Linda McAven & Richard Corbett (Lab)

Here is TTIP information from 38 Degrees and the World Development Movement.

Posted from here.

One thought on “#Halifax and #Hebden Bridge take part in Europe-wide day of action to stop Big Bad Treaty