18 December 2017
Local Green Councillors will this week demand a ratification referendum on Brexit as part of proposals seeking greater clarification on the impact any ‘Brexit deal’ will have on Brighton and Hove.
Proposals being put to a meeting of Full Council this Thursday 14th December from the Greens will ask the Council to write to the Secretary of State, expressing the need for a ‘referendum on the final terms of a Brexit deal, including the option to maintain full EU membership.’
Citing the ‘the mounting evidence of damage that Brexit would cause to the national and local economy and trans-European relationships’ Greens also want the Council to pressure the Government to release detail on how sectors of the economy will be affected by plans for the UK to leave the EU.
Recent polls have indicated that support is growing for a public say on the Brexit deal negotiated by the Conservative Government, with Greens campaigning heavily for a ratification referendum.
Councillor Ollie Sykes, who is proposing the notice of motion, commented:
“Brexit is a self-serving political choice by this government, following an advisory referendum. We’re getting daily reminders of the effects of this disastrous decision on our city and our country; in rising inflation, companies leaving due to uncertainty, increasing social polarisation and even a spike in hate crimes locally following the vote.
Our city voted strongly to remain in the EU and we think the City Council is best placed to continue to maintain a strong voice on the issue. Labour and the Tories seem unable to establish a position or indeed, any opposition. But the Greens want to see our Council demand full information on the likely effects of Brexit on our city and most importantly, give people the opportunity of a ratification referendum on the final deal, with an option to stay in the EU.”
Councillor Leo Littman, who will second the motion, added:
"Unlike Labour and the Tories, when it comes to Brexit we Greens are not content to simply cross our fingers and hope for the best. We are fighting for transparency and democracy. Apparently, our weak and wayward Government hasn't even bothered to assess the impact of leaving the EU. This is unacceptable and makes the job of planning for the future all the more difficult. We have no detail on how this seismic change would affect local Government and more importantly, local people.
“On top of making available the facts about Brexit, the Government must give the British people their democratic right to decide whether or not to accept whatever 'deal' has been cobbled together. In Brighton and Hove we have well established links with Europe that have brought great benefit to our city, and the Council should be pushing to maintain these vital relationships, instead of sitting by while years of good work go to waste.”
68.6% of voters in Brighton and Hove opted to ‘Remain’ in the E.U following the outcome of the June 2016 referendum. A recent poll conducted by Survation showed that more than half of people surveyed supported a referendum that would ask the public if they agree or reject the Conservative Government’s final Brexit deal.