YP Letters: I deserve a chance to vote on Brexit deal that could limit my

From; Callum Hawthorne, 19, Our Future, Our Choice activist, Burley, Leeds.


I WAS too young to vote in the 2016 EU referendum. Like most of my friends, I would have voted Remain, and was disappointed by the result. As the Prime Minister has negotiated her deal, that disappointment has turned to fear.

I study chemistry at Leeds University and want to work in it when I’m older. I fear the deal the Government has negotiated will decimate British science.

British science has won more grants from the European Research Council (ERC) than any other country. Brexit and the Government’s negotiations have put our membership of the ERC at risk – along with it 500 further research grants in the works.

Similarly, a record number of EU academics and lecturers have left the UK since the vote.

With reduced investment in research projects, and reduced researchers, why would any company working in this industry choose to invest, or set up, in the UK in the future?

I know Rachel Reeves, my MP, represents both Leavers and Remainers, the young and the old, the new to Leeds and those who have lived here their whole lives. Many supported a mandate for more money for the NHS, taking back control of our laws, and new trade deals.

But none of that is delivered by the Prime Minister’s deal. In 2016, there was a mandate for national renewal, not national humiliation. I doubt a single one of her constituents voted for a record number of EU nurses and doctors leaving the country since 2016, to become a rule taker from the European Union, to be poorer, or to be just five months away from having to rely on stockpiled foods and medicines.

To support the Prime Minister’s deal, and not let the people decide through a People’s Vote, is to assume that people here support the deal. As details of the deal drip out, it has become clear it represents a crushing blow to the poorest and youngest in our society.

If the politicians fail to give the decision as to whether the Prime Minister’s deal, or lack of one, is good enough for the future of our country, then they would be assuming that a majority of people, without question, support the deal.

As 2.6 million of Leave voters have changed their mind, 1.5 million young people have gained the vote since 2016, and one million European citizens have taken British citizenship since the vote, evidence is lacking.

It is a necessity, for the future of Leeds and its younger people, and for democracy, to have a People’s Vote on the Government’s Brexit deal.