Should I stay or should I go now? | EU Referendum

23:12

Now, I'm not going to sit here and pretend like I'm well brushed up on my politics because, like most of you reading this, I'm not. I wish I'd taken more of an interest in it and that is something I'm hoping to change but for now, an average Briton I shall be. I will however, give some of my view on the referendum and why on June 23rd I will be voting to remain.


Immigration

The biggest argument people are giving for wanting to leave the EU is immigration. I've only encountered two people who have given reasons that don't include that one. But why? Where has this xenophobia stemmed from? More often that not I'll hear people complaining of how foreigners have come to this country and taken their jobs etc (we're all aware of the kinds of remarks they make). But here are just a few facts on immigration -

  • Immigrants are 60% less likely to claim benefits than a British-born person.
  • Between 1995-2011, EU immigrants contributed £8.8billion more than they gained.
  • Almost 5.5million British people permanently live abroad. (But yet they can't come and live here? Seems fair)
And our borders are not just open for anyone to enter. We have a special status whereby we check every single person entering the country. Immigration is hugely beneficial to this country and the sooner we stop thinking of it as damaging, the better.

The Single Market 

The single market is a territory whereby there is no internal borders or regulatory obstacles for the movement of goods and services. This means that by being part of the EU we are able to trade with other countries without restriction. And with 45% of our exports going to the EU, 50% of our imports coming from the EU, the single market having a much greater economy than the UK's and gaining millions of jobs through trading, it's highly beneficial for us. 

Rights

A lot of people fail to remember that we do have a lot of rights that we take for granted that were in fact brought in by the EU. You know when you need a week off of work because your mates convinced you that taking a week off to go to Magaluf was a good idea? Yeah, thank the EU for that holiday leave. You're pregnant? Congrats! But whatever will you do if you're not working!? Don't worry, the EU has you covered. Paid maternity leave for all! You get the idea...

Sovereignty

The only argument I've heard for leaving that didn't include immigration was from my dad and step mum who's main argument was the want for sovereignty. And I kind of get that. However, back in January, David Cameron sort to change the UK's position in the EU and under a new deal we will have more of a say in the running of our affairs. It's difficult to say how much this is going to truly change but I think it's a step in the right direction at least.

Security

As part of the EU we benefit from the European Arrest Warrant which means thats criminals cannot simply escape to other EU countries. It also means that records such as DNA and fingerprints are shared between countries and so acts of terrorism etc do not simply stop at the borders.


No one really knows what the outcome of the referendum is going to be as polls on the matter seem to be very much equally divided. And if we do vote to leave no one really knows what the outcome of that will be as no country has ever left the EU before. 

I personally haven't heard any compelling reason to vote leave and so I know what box I'll be ticking on June 23rd. Do you?

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