Response to local farmer Colin Gibson

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Farmers would have a brighter future outside of the EU

UKIP Mid Ulster Assembly candidate Alan Day responds to local Mid Ulster farmer Colin Gibson

Alan Day stated “UK Farm Minister George Eustice has outlined plans for farmers should we vote to leave the undemocratic European Union. I welcome his commitment that “The UK government will continue to support farming and the environment financially. ”

The NFU`s recent report concludes that “Price changes due to a Brexit have a positive impact on farm incomes in all sectors under the FTA and WTO-default scenario.” so long as current levels of subsidies are maintained

Alan continued “Under such circumstances I have no doubt that we would strike a free trade deal. Last year the UK exported £7.5bn worth of food to the EU but we imported food worth £18bn. We have an annual trade deficit with the EU in food alone of £10bn so they need a free-trade deal.”

“The EU budget is under strain and CAP funding will be targeted in the coming years. EU regulations have decimated our fishing industries. Farmers are marching in London due to the plight of the industry and figures from the Scottish government show that farm incomes in Scotland have halved between 2010-2014. Far better that our own democratically elected government is in control whereby a UK Farm Payment would replace the EU one. Maintaining existing funding levels would only use a fraction the £19bn we send to the EU annually. Indeed it may be the case that such powers would be devolved after `Brexit`.

Brexit would allow farmers to do better if the Government continues with the current level of area payments and the Government would be better off too. The UK currently contributes an estimated €7.9bn to the CAP budget, from which its farmers receive €3.8bn. The current level of area payments can be retained with a saving of €4.1bn.”


UKIP respond to pro EU business groups claims

Press Release

UKIP respond to pro EU business groups claims

UKIP Mid Ulster candidate Alan Day has commented on the CBI, the agri-food body NIFDA and independent retail group NIIRTA pro EU message

Alan Day stated “There is much ado about leaving the EU. Apparently the sky will fall and we will see the end of days.

Official DETI figure reveal that 91% of all Northern Ireland trade is either within the UK or with non EU countries. Only 8.8% of all NI trade is with the EU, half of which is with the Republic.

Even at UK level, of the 21 per cent of UK GDP that depends on overseas commerce, 10% is with the EU, and 11 per cent is with the Commonwealth and the rest of the world.

It is false to claim that EU membership leads to lower prices. Food prices rose sharply in the UK when we joined the EEC in 1973 as we had to import food from the EU rather than the Commonwealth. The Institute of Economic Affairs says current food prices are 17% higher in the EU compared to world wholesale prices.

CAP funding from the EU has been reducing in recent years and will continue to do so. Indeed a recent report shows that Scottish Farm income has dropped by 55% from 2010-2015.

UK Farming Minister George Eustice has already confirmed that farm subsidies would continue after leaving the EU. Our net annual contribution to the CAP is £5 billion but British farmers get far less back. Outside the EU the gov could spend the full £5bn

As Dan Hannan MEP has said “We see the direction in which the EU is going, and we know now that no renegotiation can alter it from within.”

Trade with the EU is important and would undoubtedly continue after leaving the EU but we would have the liberty to strike out on our own and trade globally without hindrance. What price our liberty & democracy?”

Carers being neglected

Press Release

Carers being neglected

UKIP Mid Ulster Assembly candidate Alan Day raises the plight of carers

Alan stated “Millions give up work, or work reduced hours, to care for elderly or disabled relatives. In doing so, they make a huge contribution to society, although often at great personal and financial cost.
The UK’s army of unpaid Carers saved the NHS over £124 Billion in 2012/13 according to the ONS. Charities that specialise in providing assistance for Mental Health patients and Carers have been overwhelmed whilst also dealing with less funding. The last few years has seen an alarming increase in suicides throughout Northern Ireland and part of the blame has to go on the health Minister and Trusts for not being proactive in dealing with an increasing problem. Carers are now also seeing their health deteriorate due to depression, stress & poverty.

It is ridiculous that a full time Carer putting 35 hours a week are paid the equivalent of just £1:75p per hour. Carer s currently receive £62:10 per week for the thankless job they do – contrast that to a Jobseeker above the age of 25 who receives £73.10 per week.
In return for this meagre allowance, Carers are expected to provide a level of care that in most cases would be that expected of a Nurse or Health Visitor. Carers are expected to be able to dispense and monitor addictive class C Drugs, dress and change dressings, administer injections and medication sometimes intravenously and carry out various other medical grade tasks despite never being properly trained to do so. Is it any wonder that the vast majority of Carers feel isolated, trapped and undervalued?

At a bare minimum I would like to see carers allowance matching Jobseekers allowance giving an extra £572 a year.