24th June 2016
For Immediate Release
South East Green Party: Leave vote requires all political parties to work together to fix our democracy.
Responding to the news that the UK has voted to leave the EU, representatives of the South East Green Party have called upon parties from all sides to work together to fix our democratic system, and to re-build our cohesion following a campaign which has divided communities.
Across the South East, many areas voted to leave, with some large majorities voting leave in areas such as Isle of Wight. Meanwhile, areas including Lewes, Tunbridge wells and Reading voted remain, with large majorities voting remain in the cities of Oxford and Brighton.
Green MP for Brighton and Hove, Caroline Lucas said:
“People in Britain are angry – and they’ve expressed that anger by voting to leave the EU. The most important task at hand now is unifying our divided communities.
“Our party will now mobilise alongside the Trade Unions, environmental groups and others to defend our hard-won rights at work and environmental protections.
“If this referendum has shown one thing to be clear it is that the old political party system is not representing people’s views. Politics in the UK is synthetically bound to the Tories and Labour – that’s clearly failing. We’re calling on all sides to come together to fix our democracy here in Britain – starting with electoral reform for the House of Commons. The democratic deficit will not be fixed by leaving the EU – we need to look closer to home too.
“What worries us now is the fate of the many Europeans living here. The Leave campaign said they will be able to stay – and we expect them to honour that. But what about people who have made plans to come here to join family, or British people who have saved up for a lifetime to move to Spain? The prospect of shutting down the right to free movement is frightening, as are the consequences of a campaign that has at times pitted neighbours against one another, whipped up fear and allowed lies and myths to take the place of truth. Britain deserves better and I am pledging anew to fight against division on behalf of my constituents.”
Jonathan Essex, chair of the South East Green Party said:
“In the South East, we’ve seen large numbers vote ‘leave’, in spite of some key ‘remain’ strongholds in our green hubs including Oxford and Brighton. With our region and the country divided over this issue, it’s clear that change is needed. But we must make sure that change is one that brings Britain back together - reuniting people, generations, regions, and makes life better for communities now leading to hopeful future.
“We have started a national conversation on our future and place in the world. But we have voted leave without a clear manifesto of what that means. As Greens we campaigned in this referendum for positive reform, and this reform is now needed more than ever. We must now bridge the divisions highlighted by this vote and politics in the UK, across the EU and with our global institutions.
“So now is the time to build a progressive alliance to change Britain for the better, which means how we do politics must change for the better.”
South East Regional Co-ordinator for the Green Party
[email protected] / 07850 653501