Casa: ‘EP can pass 10,000 resolutions on abortion but cannot force Malta’s hand’

Nationalist MEP David Casa addresses audience at Europe House in Valletta on his five-year record in the European Parliament

Nationalist MEP David Casa
Nationalist MEP David Casa

David Casa said no European Parliament resolution can ever be binding upon Malta in forcing it to legislate abortion, the MEP told an audience at Europe House in Valletta.

“It is subject that only the Maltese parliament can legislate, not the EP,” Casa said on the recent resolution passed by MEPs demanding that abortion be recognised as a fundamental right.

“The EP can pass 10,000 resolutions every day. MEPs cannot impose on us that abortion be legislated,” Casa said, who voted against the resolution.

Malta remains one of the few EU states in which abortion is outrightly banned by its Criminal Code except in specific cases in which a three-doctor conference determines a termination is required to safeguard a mother’s life.

“Eddie Fenech Adami had been strong on this: he wanted a protocol on EU membership that states the EU can never have the right to impose on Malta any law on abortion. Abortion in Malta can only be introduced if the government and the Maltese parliament decides to introduce abortion.”

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Outlining his work as an MEP over the last five years and also during the 20 years he has been an MEP since Malta joined the EU in 2004, Casa said he was especially proud of his work on the Work-Life Balance Directive.

“The best thing I did is the Work-Life Balance Directive,” he said when asked by moderator Claire Agius Ordway, “for the father for whom the best day in life is that of the birth of his child, now, instead of having just one day, he has ten days with that new-born child.”

Casa led the work on this file in the European Parliament to introduce minimum standards throughout Europe, including Malta, which give more rights to parents and carers, as well as a right for workers to request flexible arrangements.

The European Union Social Fund, which Casa also served as rapporteur for the EP, is today also being used in Malta to help students take O-level exams, aid that did not exist before joining the EU.

The Social Climate Fund, on which he was also co-rapporteur, is intended not only to help vulnerable people in the climate transition, but also to do so in a sustainable manner, and “to help the elderly not only pay the electricity bill but to have access to other types of energies to reduce that electricity bill” he said, explaining that this Fund helps people, SMEs and employers of fewer than 10 people, to have solar panels, better insulation, and non-polluting cars.

He also highlighted the EU Disability Card, on which a vote in the European Parliament is foreseen in two weeks’ time. It is intended to grant a status to persons with disabilities recognised across the EU. All benefits and information available to a person with disabilities who are nationals of an EU country should be made accessible to nationals of other EU countries who move to that country.

He also stressed the importance of voting in the European elections, and he also mentioned the joint work of all current MEPs in most of the EP’s work.

David Casa is Malta’s longest-serving MEP. He is a full member of the Employment and Social Affairs Committee and a substitute member of the Committee on Economic and Monetary Affairs.

MEP Casa has led the European Parliament’s work on the Social Climate Fund (SCF) and the European Social Fund Plus (ESF+). He has contributed as a shadow rapporteur to the establishment of the European Disability Card and for the amendment of the Regulation for the Fund for European Aid to the Most Deprived (FEAD) with specific measures for addressing the COVID-19 crisis.

The SCF is part of the Fit for 55 package under the European Green Deal and dedicates funding to support the vulnerable groups most affected by the green transition. The European Social Fund Plus (ESF+) is the European Union (EU)’s main instrument for investing in people and supporting the implementation of the European Pillar of Social Rights. With a budget of €142.7 billion for the period 2021-2027, the ESF+ will continue to provide an important contribution to the EU’s employment, social, education and skills policies, including structural reforms in these areas.

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This article is part of a content series called Ewropej. This is a multi-newsroom initiative part-funded by the European Parliament to bring the work of the EP closer to the citizens of Malta and keep them informed about matters that affect their daily lives. This article reflects only the author’s view. The action was co-financed by the European Union in the frame of the European Parliament's grant programme in the field of communication. The European Parliament was not involved in its preparation and is, in no case, responsible for or bound by the information or opinions expressed in the context of this action. In accordance with applicable law, the authors, interviewed people, publishers or programme broadcasters are solely responsible. The European Parliament can also not be held liable for direct or indirect damage that may result from the implementation of the action.

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