Readers will be aware that David Cameron listed his “EU demands” this week.
Individuals in the East Midlands benefit from being in the EU; whether its via assistance in starting their own business, helping young people into training and employment or through protecting the production of local produce to ensure that it is produced in the East Midlands, safeguarding local jobs.
With Mr Cameron starting the formal stage of negotiations, we cannot afford for Britain to become marginalised, its voice not heard at the table when decisions affecting our future are made.
Maintaining British influence must be key in the coming months.
Labour MEPs know that the EU isn’t perfect, but we also know the huge benefits of staying in the EU from workers’ rights to having access to the single market.
We believe that the best thing to do is to remain in the EU and reform it from within.
Between now and the referendum, Labour MEPs will continue to make the case for our membership of the EU. We will keep campaigning for a Europe that changes and develops to meet the challenges we are facing.
There are no circumstances in which we would be better off by quitting - and the Prime Minister should be honest about that fact.
Labour MEP for the East Midlands