Alright, so recently you may have heard about the EU referendum coming up on June 23rd. If you don't know much about it, or want to know more, then hopefully this article will help! I'd recommend reading this as it is arguably more important than the general elections.
The EU referendum will take place on Thursday June 23rd, and it will decide the future of the UK's participation with in the European Union. Brexit means 'Britain's Exit' for short, just to clear that up before we continue.
Many of the parties are Eurosceptic (leave the European Union), for example the Conservative Party and UKIP, but there are many parties who firmly wish to stay with in the European Union. These include; Labour, SNP (Scottish National Party), Lib Dems, Green Party and the Welsh Nationalists. Even ex London Mayor, Boris Johnson wanted to leave the EU, however Sadiq Khan, the new Mayor of London, wishes to stay.
Knowing which party wants to stay and leave will help you see where you stand based on your political alignment, but you won't be voting for a party in this case; your vote will simply be 'leave' or 'remain'. Even if you are aligned to a particular party, i'd still recommend you research a little more about the implications of ending our involvement with in the EU. To save you searching further, here are a few reasons for staying, and a few for leaving:
Why we should stay in the EU:
Travel and Work
Our membership within the EU is the very reason we can travel cheaply to other countries within Europe, without needing a visa. This also means that there is free movement for workers, in and out of the UK. When you consider that roughly 1.4 million British citizens are living outside the UK, but with in the EU. If we left, this would change, meaning that we would require visas for travel, as well as for working abroad. Millions of jobs are linked to European Union membership, and if we lift, it is unclear exactly what would happen to these jobs, but I'm sure it won't be good.
There is something in the EU 'rulebook' called the 'European Arrest Warrant'. This basically means that criminals can be prosecuted and brought to justice across the EU, without the need for extradition.
European Film Industry
This one affects me, and may indirectly affect you too. If we left the EU, it would mean that we wouldn't get as many (if any at all) tax breaks etc, when filming in Europe. Subsequently other countries wouldn't come to the UK for the very same reason, which means that our economy would suffer in terms of the European film industry.
Our influence as a country
Europe is the biggest trade market in the world, and we play a big role with in many European markets, including development projects, scientific research and world trade. Some of our biggest trade partners are in the European Union and when you consider that more than half of our exports go to European
countries, the implications of leaving the EU would damage this link, meaning that our economy would suffer based on trade alone.
Why we should leave the EU:
More control of immigration
If we weren't apart of the EU, we would have more control of our borders. Many argue that the only way to have control of our borders is by leading the EU.
We would have more control over the UK law because while in the EU, laws created by the European Parliament are superior to ours, and we must conform to them. The European Parliament is directly elected.
Other countries can thrive
Norway exists within the European trade agreement, but isn't technically part of the EU. They have control over its own trades, rather than having to conform to quotas enforced by the EU (for example with farming and fishing).
Membership already costs around £25m a day. Although this figure seems big, it doesn't mean anything without looking at how much we profit from membership.
The thing to take from this article is that you need to figure which side of the fence you belong, because there are huge implications for us as a country if we leave the EU. This has to be a decision that is representative of the people, rather than of the politicians.
So do your research and get ready for the vote on June 23rd!
Your vote counts.