I supported the Ferrara report because it seeks to increase democracy, transparency and accountability. If the European Union were all of these things, it would be a far less bad organisation than it is.

Whilst there is much to commend in this report, the fact of the matter is that I cannot vote for a report which seeks to harmonise decisions across the European Union on a matter which should be for nation states to determine. Indeed, if such a measure were before the United Kingdom Parliament I might well support it, at least for the most part. But to take such decisions at EU level is not the appropriate level; subsidiarity should dictate that decisions are taken at the closest possible level to the citizen rather than at the remotest possible level.

I oppose calls for EU legislation, the demeaning of women through gender quotas, calls for EU funding and gender mainstreaming in schools. Whatever good is suggested in this report, I had no option but to vote against a report containing all of these things.

Public access to documents for the years 2014-2015 (A8-0141/2016 – Laura Ferrara)