Seven council leaders from across the North East have today come together to sign a letter warning that “the disastrous economic effects of Brexit could mean catastrophe for our councils’ ability to deliver the services people rely on.”
In a letter to the Times, local Council leaders including Middlesbrough’s Mayor Dave Budd and Labour Group Leaders, Simon Henig, Nick Forbes, Paul Watson, Chris Akers-Belcher, Iain Malcolm and Bob Cook argue that in order to continue to support local businesses and jobs, remaining in the EU is crucial. The letter argues that in almost every area of council work, leaving the EU would have a negative impact. In particular they use the examples of policing, environmental protection and public health and funding for flood protection as areas that could be damaged if the UK votes for leave in June. They also argue that Brexit would leave local people £450 a year worse off as a result of higher prices on the high street.
The letter is part of the Labour party’s ‘Labour In for Britain’ campaign to persuade people to vote to remain in the EU referendum on June 23rd. The letter was signed by 64 Labour Council Leaders from across the country who collectively deliver services to more than 12 million people. The Labour campaign is chaired by Alan Johnson MP and has the backing of Jeremy Corbyn and the rest of the Labour Shadow Cabinet.
In the letter, the Council Leaders said:
“As Council Leaders delivering services to thousands of citizens every day, we are united in the view that Britain is better off in Europe.
“From supporting local businesses and jobs, to protecting working people and supporting our health and environment, Britain’s EU membership is vital.
“The disastrous economic effects of Brexit could mean catastrophe for our councils’ ability to deliver the services people rely on, and if we leave Europe, it is our communities that will be hardest hit.”