I wrote this as one of the speeches to be delivered today by my friends at the Chester for Europe demo today 7th September 2019.
I watched some footage today of a bland faced politician being confronted by an angry French woman. With tears in her eyes and defiance in her heart, she explained to him exactly why she stood with a stop Brexit banner with her British friends. She has been in the UK for 21 years, longer than she lived in France. Her husband is British, as are her children.
The Bland Faced Man tried to present his Brexit as a difference of opinion, like you would discuss what you think about porridge or boiled eggs. The woman let rip and demonstrated the passion felt by every single person who has been adversely affected by that vote on June 23rd 2016.
5 million people denied a vote on their very futures remain unsure what will happen to them. Settled status means nothing certain and there is no protective legislation so a no-deal offers them nothing. The British in the EU likewise have little to go on beyond unilateral guarantees made in individual member states.
A friend of mine and her husband moved into her daughters spare room this week thanks to a job loss directly linked to Brexit. Her husband is struggling to find a new job, as an EU27 citizen combined with his area of expertise, Brexit is having an ongoing effect on his employment prospects. My friend said “I know I should be grateful I have somewhere to go but right now all I feel is anger and distress” The poor woman even feels guilty at feeling her justified and righteous anger.
I saw a man on twitter share his distress, the Coroner had confirmed worry about brexit was one of the factors in his EU27 citizens wife’s suicide.
Imagine that? Imagine having to live with that?
Politicians have created a divide. In our Families, in our communities, in our country. For what? What is so good about a future outside the EU? 3 years of asking this have never yet yielded a satisfactory answer from the bland men who sold us their lies in 2016. It’s unforgivable what they have done to our great nation.
And meanwhile, what of our cross border families? These people are YOUR friends, your colleagues, your neighbours, your own families. Our government cares not a jot about them. These people with no voice are OUR responsibility, Brexit has diminished their status from being less than equal and this is wrong. They have stood by our sides for all these years contributing to our communities. It’s now time for us to stand side by side with them.