Our campaign will seek to make three main arguments on why stopping Brexit is the only good deal, both for young people and for the country:
Brexit is bad for young people. The only good deal for us, the only good deal for the country, is staying in the EU. Here are 3 reasons why:
Deprivation of opportunities
Our generation is simply asking for the same opportunities that older generations have had.
All of us have had the right to travel, work, and live from Berlin to Bratislava. Many have met loved ones abroad, and settled either here or there. Every young person in 27 other countries will continue to enjoy the ability to live, work, and love across an entire continent, and to continue to enjoy their European identity. Our parents and grandparents, for the last forty years, have enjoyed the same opportunities - it is only younger Brits, who want these opportunities the most, who are to be deprived of them.
Our generation wants the opportunity to lead in the world, to write history - not just read it. We want to solve the problems we care about: we want to fight climate change, cooperate hand in hand with our most important friends and allies on the continent, extend equal rights across the world.
We fear Brexit will deprive us of these opportunities - to be the engaged, outward looking, United Kingdom that we know we want to be.
Young people do not want Brexit
73% of young people voted to Remain. We are overwhelmingly pro-EU - in fact, we have become more pro-European since the referendum. The most recent poll shows that those aged 18-29 would now vote 87% in favour of remaining in the EU. and yet our country is continuing on its current isolationist path regardless. Our generation are going to have to live with the consequences of a disastrous Brexit which we do not want.
We are firm believers in democracy. We are not campaigning to disenfranchise anyone - one person, one vote is a principle with which we all agree. But there will be a time when our generation ages. We will soon confront the reality of what we have been left, and if we do not like it we will simply reverse it. The problem is that we will not be able to come back on the same terms as before. This issue requires careful consideration; scrutiny of the Brexit options available, a hard look at whether they are as good as the deal we already have, and when it becomes clear that they are not, a People’s Vote.
Huge distraction from the real issues
As Calum sets out in his Message to Westminster, Britain does not have the time or energy to cope with the demands of Brexit. An already strained civil service dealing with this doesn’t have time to pay attention to the real issues in this country.
Our country is plagued by several social and economic crises - crises which pushed some into voting leave in the first place. We need to fix an NHS that will be hurt, not helped by Brexit. We need to fix the housing market, which currently means that one in three of us will never own our own home. We need to give our public services the technological overhaul, investment, and money that they need. We need much better provision of non-university post-16 education. We need a program to deliver prosperity to the communities and towns left behind for the last two decades. We need a program to counter pernicious regional inequality, with much better incentives for businesses to operate in more deprived areas. But we cannot realistically achieve this while Brexit diverts precious attention and resources away from the issues which really matter.
For these reasons, we believe we need a People's Vote. Our Future, Our Choice respects the result of the referendum in 2016. But democracy is a process, not an event. It did not stop on the 23rd of June 2016. Since then, new facts have emerged which demand a reevaluation of whether or not the Brexit Britain voted for in 2016 is the one they are going to get.
What was promised will not be delivered. We won’t get the same benefits without the costs. There are tradeoffs which make any Brexit bad for young people. Our report shows that even the softest Brexit will hurt our future earnings.
Mayhem on the Irish border, companies and talented Europeans leaving, and a poor, isolated, Britain emerging. Nobody voted to make our country poorer and less secure than before. The government’s deal has failed to pass parliament with the biggest defeat in history. One thing is clear: leaving with No Deal would be a democratic, economic, and political disaster. It could cost young people up to £108,000. It could mean shortages of basic foods and medicines. But there’s a majority in Parliament and in the country against it.
Other options are now being considered. Once Parliament has looked at these, and found them to be less good than the deal we currently enjoy, the only way forward is a People’s Vote.