Hudghton (Greens/EFA) - It is to be hoped that the designation of 2010 as "European Year for Combating Poverty and Social Exclusion" will lead to real progress across the EU in tackling inequalities. The report correctly notes that the successful work in this area requires cooperation at European, national, regional and local level. My own nation, Scotland, still has levels of poverty which are quite shameful particularly given the country's immense wealth. Fortunately we now have a government which is committed to tackling the social exclusion that they inherited from successive unionist administrations. The Scottish government's commitment is wholly in keeping with the principles outlined in the Panayotopoulos-Cassiotou report which I happily supported.

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