Honeyball’s Weekly Round-Up

Labour Party

Parity in the content and quality of sex education across Europe continues to vary widely. And as Dave Keating reveals in the latest issue of European Voice, it doesn’t just vary from country to country but also can vary widely within them.

I was surprised to read that there remains such a great divide between those countries which do educate their young people and those who still don’t.

The report found, unsurprisingly, that Nordic and Benelux countries have the highest levels of education while eastern and southern countries (with the exception of Spain and Portugal where there has been vast improvement) hardly touch on the subject.

The responsible teaching of sex education is so important because, as the report finds, there is a direct correlation between the education and rates of HIV infection. You can read more on the report and the full article in the latest issue of European Voice here.

Meanwhile back in the UK it’s another week and yet more confusion of the coalition governments position on Europe.

In two separate interviews today, Work and Pensions Secretary, Iain Duncan Smith, and Deputy Prime Minister, Nick Clegg, contradicted themselves once again- it did at least provide an indication of how deep the fracture is running.

First the Work and Pensions Secretary said: ‘that a significant EU treaty change should trigger a referendum’. At the same time Nick Clegg said that a single change, even if significant, did not require voters to be consulted.

German chancellor Angela Merkel will meet French president Nicolas Sarkozy in Paris on tomorrow (Monday) to ‘thrash out a plan to save the euro ahead of the EU summit on Thursday,’

As the fracture continues to gather pace so Duncan Smith continue to make ridiculous and sweeping statements which only serve to reveal a greater lack of understanding than we could ever have given him or his party credit for.

He even suggested that if the summit leads to a treaty renegotiation, the prime minister should use it to demand repatriation of powers to Britain from Brussels… and we know that’s almost impossible to achieve.

You can read the full story in the Guardian online here.