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Monday, 11th Jun 2018

Brexit update from Bristol's Green MEP

A Brexit update from Bristol's Green MEP Molly Scott Cato - sign up to receive regular updates here

This comes to you at a time when the stakes couldn’t be higher. Boris Johnson has warned that Brexit negotiations are facing meltdown, but urges us, in typical Dad’s Army fashion, not to panic. He also suggests he would prefer Donald Trump to be our negotiator in chief, despite the “breakdowns and all sorts of chaos” that would follow. He also accused the critical Irish border question of being the "tail to wag the dog" and that Brexit was being "dictated by this folly".
 
This has demonstrated more clearly than ever before the utter contempt leading Brextremist Tories have for the people of this country; for democracy and for harmonious relationships with our closest neighbours.

Meanwhile, Labour seem content to hand Brextremists like Boris Johnson hard Brexit on a plate. They are refusing to back a cross-Party Lords’ amendment to the EU Withdrawal Bill calling on the UK to join the European Economic Area (EEA) – effectively meaning we would remain in the single market. Keir Starmer, Labour’s Shadow Secretary of State for Brexit, announced earlier this week that the Party would propose its own amendment calling for “full access to the internal market of the European Union”. This is cakeism at its worst, as I point out in my open letter to Mr Starmer. The EU and EU27 have repeatedly made clear they are not willing to allow cherry picking or bespoke deals for the UK. It is disingenuous and arrogant in the extreme to think Labour would be able to negotiate such a deal that undermines the four freedoms – all of which are integral to the single market.

Which brings me to the most important purpose of this email. Next Tuesday 12th and Wednesday 13th June, MPs will debate and vote on 15 Lords amendments to the EU Withdrawal Bill. As a further example of the government's contempt for democratic debate they have allowed just 12 hours in total for MPs to make some of the most important decisions of their political lives.

It is therefore crucial that MPs hear the voices of their constituents before the debate and vote next week. I have drafted a letter to help with lobbying your MP on three of the most important of the 15 amendments: continued membership of the customs union, giving Parliament a meaningful vote on the outcome of EU negotiations and removing the fixed exit date from the Bill. This is aimed at South West MPs but can be adapted for use anywhere.

Please do write to your MP this weekend using this link and urge him/her to act and vote courageously in the best interests of the country.
 
Other Brexit News

People’s Vote
The Brexit shambles that we are witnessing, and failure by both government and opposition to put the interests of the country first, makes it ever more important that control is handed back to the people. This is why I am calling for a People’s Vote, something I argued for in my Guardian letter this week. I urge you to join me in London on 23rd June at the People’s Vote march. Please share this with friends. We need a show of strength to demonstrate to the government that we must have a final say on the Brexit deal, or choose to remain in the EU.

Doomsday No-deal scenario
As revelations emerged about civil servants preparing for food and medicine shortages if we crash out of the EU without a deal I was able to meet briefly with the Information Commissioner, Elizabeth Denham, when she appeared before a European Parliament hearing last week. For many months I have been using Freedom of Information requests to make public the government’s Brexit impact studies. In March the High Court refused permission for judicial review, that I applied for together with Jolyon Maugham QC. Now the Information Commission has agreed to meet me to discuss all this and their on-going investigations into the fraudulent activities of the Leave campaign. 

Brexit’s lost billions
At least a billion pounds of tax revenue, which could go towards funding schools and hospitals, will be lost due to Brexit. New revelations show that because Brexit is consuming all its time and resources, HMRC have shelved plans to digitalise tax procedures, which it estimates would have increased tax contributions to the exchequer by more than £1 billion. Our public services have already suffered badly due to the Tories cruel austerity measures. Now they look set to take a further hit thanks to Brexit. More on this here.

Molly Scott Cato

Pie in the sky  Green Group responds to release of Mayors value for money arena reports

'Pie in the sky' - Green Group responds to release of Mayor's 'value for money' arena reports

"What was first touted as a simple ‘value for money’ review is beginning to look like a very expensive piece of political justification for a decision it seems the Mayor has already taken in private..."

Bristol Greens urge local MPs to back important vote on staying in the Single Market

Bristol Greens urge local MPs to back important vote on staying in the Single Market

Bristol Green Councillors have today jointly written to the four Bristol MPs urging them to “support the Lords’ amendment to find an EEA-style solution to the Brexit problem”

Brexit update from Bristols Green MEP

Brexit update from Bristol's Green MEP

Brexit update from Bristol's Green MEP Molly Scott Cato

Green Lord Mayor Cleo Lakes acceptance speech

Green Lord Mayor Cleo Lake's acceptance speech

Full text of the acceptance speech by Bristol's new Lord Mayor

Bedminster Green survey  locals reject tall buildings

Bedminster Green survey - locals reject tall buildings

Southville Green councillors Charlie Bolton and Steve Clarke have conducted a survey of local residents to explore their views on the proposals by a set of developers to construct over 1200 new homes in the Bedminster Green area.

Cleo Lake becomes Lord Mayor

Cleo Lake becomes Lord Mayor

Green Councillor Cleo Lake took up her role as Lord Mayor of Bristol to applause from a packed puiblic chamber where friends, family and members of the local communty had come to see her take up the position of first citizen of Bristol this week.

Watch Bristols MEP makes the case for a Peoples Vote on Brexit

Watch: Bristol's MEP makes the case for a 'People's Vote' on Brexit

Molly talks to BBC Sunday Politics South West about the importance of a People’s Vote on the final Brexit deal, especially for students and young people who were unable to vote in the EU referendum.

Job Junior Constituency Assistant  Bristol Office of Molly Scott Cato MEP

Job: Junior Constituency Assistant – Bristol Office of Molly Scott Cato MEP

Molly is looking for a part time (21 hours per week) Junior Constituency Assistant for her constituency office in Bristol. The role will start in approximately July 2018 and will initially be for a fixed term period of 3 months.

Bristols MEP condemns Not me Gove strategy for air pollution

Bristol's MEP condemns ‘Not me Gove’ ‘strategy’ for air pollution

Bristol's Green MEP, Molly Scott Cato has accused Environment Secretary Michael Gove of pointing the finger of blame for the UK’s illegal air quality in every direction but at the government and the chief causes of the problem.

Greens call for Bristol West MP to push for continued single market membership

Greens call for Bristol West MP to push for continued single market membership

Molly Scott Cato, Bristol's Green MEP, has called on Bristol West MP, Thangam Debbonaire, to use the ‘ray of hope’ offered by the Lords yesterday and vote to keep the UK inside the single market.

Why did the Council drop Bristol Energy

Why did the Council drop Bristol Energy?

Did LeaveEU take data from Bristol companies

Did Leave.EU take data from Bristol companies?

Bristol's Green MEP, Molly Scott Cato, has today written to Avon and Somerset Police to ask if the force is investigating new evidence that Bristol companies GoSkippy and Eldon Insurance allegedly shared data illegally with Leave.EU.

Green councillors stand with Friends of Redland Library against closure

Green councillors stand with Friends of Redland Library against closure

At a meeting of Friends of Redland Library last week, Green councillors Carla Denyer and Clive Stevens were amongst the speakers updating residents about the progress of the campaign to save Bristol’s libraries.

Brexit update from Bristols Green MEP

Brexit update from Bristol's Green MEP

An update from Molly Scott Cato, Bristol's Green MEP and the national EU spokesperson

Keeping Bristols parks adfree

Keeping Bristol’s parks ad-free

At a council meeting on March 20 Bristol Council debated a petition to ‘Keep our parks advertising free’, in response to the Labour administration’s proposals to introduce commercial advertising to Bristol's parks and green spaces. Green Cllr Steve Clarke spoke in response.

Bristol Uni announces it will become fossil free

Bristol Uni announces it will become fossil free

The University of Bristol, after extensive talks, announced today that it will withdraw all £700,000 of its investment from the fossil fuel industry. Moving from partial to full divestment is a big step forward for the university, with plans being put in place to ditch all fossil fuel companies from its investment portfolio over the next couple of years.

Council votes for Temple Meads arena location after Green motion

Council votes for Temple Meads arena location after Green motion

Over five thousand people have now signed a petition calling for the Mayor to support a Bristol arena at Temple Meads. Green councillors brought the matter to a vote with a motion to Full Council.

Its time for a drug consumption room in Bristol

It’s time for a drug consumption room in Bristol

Green Councillor Cleo Lake is calling for Bristol to launch a drug consumption room to give drug users a safer space with access to needles and specialist support.

Bristols Three ProEU MEPs release joint statement on Russian poison attack

Bristol's Three Pro-EU MEPs release joint statement on Russian poison attack

“In a difficult week for pro-EU MEPs, when we debated the next stage of the leaving process, it was heartening to feel the warmth and generosity of our European colleagues in solidarity with the UK in the face of Russian aggression."

Greens bring vote on Arena location to Council meeting

Greens bring vote on Arena location to Council meeting

Green Councillors have secured a Council debate and vote on the location of Bristol’s arena at next Tuesday’s Council meeting.

Bristols next Lord Mayor announced as Green Councillor Cleo Lake

Bristol’s next Lord Mayor announced as Green Councillor Cleo Lake

Green Councillors have announced their candidate for Lord Mayor as Cotham Councillor, Cleo Lake

Clean Air Action Plan proposed after years of Green campaigning

Clean Air Action Plan proposed after years of Green campaigning

At Bristol Council today, the Cabinet approved the development of a Clean Air Action Plan to tackle the illegal levels of air pollution in the city, which has been estimated to contribute to over 300 premature deaths per year.

High Court refuses MEPs Brexit case

High Court refuses MEP's Brexit case

High Court refuses to force government’s hand over Brexit impact studies

Bristols MEP is today in High Court over Brexit court action

Bristol's MEP is today in High Court over Brexit court action

The High Court will this morning hear an oral application for permission to apply for judicial review to compel the production, in public, of the studies the government continues to withhold on the economic impacts of Brexit.

Green Group leader lobbies Treasury for end to local government cuts

Green Group leader lobbies Treasury for end to local government cuts

Green Group leader Eleanor Combley today travelled to London to hand in a letter to the Treasury calling for an end to cuts to local government funding.

Greens refuse to vote for Labours cuts budget

Greens refuse to vote for Labour’s cuts budget

At today’s budget Full Council meeting in Bristol City Hall, the city’s Green Councillors have refused to vote for the Labour Mayor’s austerity budget that proposed cuts of £34 million across Bristol, including library and public toilet closures and a large funding cut to Adult Social Care.

Raft of Green amendments passes at Budget Full Council

Raft of Green amendments passes at Budget Full Council

Bristol’s Green Councillors are celebrating today as all but one of their budget amendments at today’s Budget Full Council were passed.

Plot to ditch EU food standards threatens South West producers

Plot to ditch EU food standards threatens South West producers

Bristol's Green MEP, Molly Scott Cato, has warned of a plot by leading rightwing Brexiteers to ditch EU food and safety standards that would allow the import of US meats, drugs and chemicals currently banned in Britain.

New report on Britains broken housing market  lessons from other EU Countries

New report on ‘Britain’s broken housing market’ & lessons from other EU Countries

Bristol's Green MEP, Molly Scott Cato, has launched a report she commissioned on the UK’s housing crisis.

Opinion Blue sky thinking not allowed  frustrations of Bristol City Councils budget

Opinion: Blue sky thinking not allowed – frustrations of Bristol City Council’s budget

Green councillor for Clifton Down Carla Denyer writes for Bristol 24/7 on the restrictions surrounding the budget process at the council, which she says "makes long-term thinking impossible."

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