Brexit debate continues, and in the LEAVE corner…

June 14, 2016

HR Manager, Tim Frear, supports leaving the EU.

Before I start there is one key question a number of people have asked and that must be addressed before any other issue about the EU referendum: the Eurovision Song Contest – even if we pull out of the EU WE WILL still be a key country in the contest each May…

It’s interesting to write a blog against another person when facts are ambiguous and every point for staying within the EU can be flipped – all the points below have been thrashed out by one politician or another and have been used for both campaigns. Until the votes are counted we will not know the true outcome but my overall thoughts in essence are:

  • Whatever happens we still have the strength and the power as a country to make the choices we need to become a stronger United Kingdom.
  • The referendum is not about our generation it’s about our children and their children.
  • It will take time but I feel this is our last chance to protect the United Kingdom, our history, culture and the monarchy.

Many people forget that this is the second time we’re having this exact same debate and that in 1975 Margaret Thatcher was at the forefront of promoting the EEC membership – for me to make the best-informed decision I looked at this referendum. The politicians promoting the EEC stated the UK people had a new way forward with better trade agreements, stronger job opportunities, better and easier law making processes, stronger relationships etc. Many things were clearly not delivered in 1975 and now in 2016 we are being promised the same.

“According to the latest Treasury figures, the UK’s net contribution for 2014/15 was £8.8bn – nearly double what it was in 2009/10. HM Revenue and Customs have suggested about 20,000 EU nationals receive child benefit payments in respect of 34,000 children in their country of origin at an estimated cost of about £30m.”

The hottest topic in this referendum is immigration. The UK will always need a certain level of skilled migration – however we need to make sure we are controlling our borders. We do this well with non-EU countries and have a points system in place. We need to look at EU migration as our original membership into the EEC did not account for the amount of member countries we currently have. It is estimated that as a country we need to reduce migration to the UK by fewer than 100,000 people. By controlling our borders more effectively, we can reduce our unemployment level, benefiting our own jobseekers and unemployed.

The Trades Union Congress (TUC) has stated that by 2030 if we leave the EU our salaries will be hit by £38 per week – the TUC have used extremely long timescales and lower impact rates allowing them to save face if they were to get it wrong. With no real quantifiable data all this scaremongering and estimates are based on people’s opinions versus scarce facts. After reviewing a number of news articles and listening to politicians I do believe that we will pay more in taxes and wages to begin with to ensure we are stronger down the line.

As an HR professional, and looking at HR related issues, workers rights have been addressed by the “better in” campaigners with Labour leader Jeremy Corbin stating, “It means workers throughout Europe have decent rights at work, meaning it’s harder to undercut terms and conditions across Europe.” This being said, if we were out of the EU, what stops our governments reviewing current legislation and employment law (easier than we would do within the EU) to protect our employees?

Other key areas that I think are crucial to be reviewed in the debate, and are being slightly overlooked or pushed aside, include things like the creation of a new EU Army, which would reduce the control of our home defences.

I’m a jet-setter and work to play and travel. I have been told that it will be harder for me to spend my money and travel in Europe if we leave. Common sense tells me this is a joke! I doubt any hotel, resort or country would turn around and reject the British people with money to spend because of our political decision to leave the EU.

As a Yorkshire boy, farming has a place in my heart and retaining the UK countryside and farming is important to me and my circle of friends. The government states the EU subsidises 50% of UK farmers, (via the Common Agricultural Policy or CAP). This is not wholly accurate as the UK pays more to the CAP than it gets back, the CAP also wastes lots of money on bureaucracy, processing and administration.

It’s hard to predict what will happen if we do leave the EU. However this is the time to make a difference to the future of the UK. I have family that will surpass my lifetime, and I am dedicated to creating a better UK for them.

I encourage people to be open minded and to question what has been said – we cannot predict the future but we do need to learn from the past.

The STAY debate – our founder and MD, Claire Morley-Jones, argues for staying in the EU. Read more here.

Leeds based HR180 is a team of superheroes in HR Outsourcing, Projects and Consultancy committed to work in partnership with organisations of all sizes to establish working policies to go above and beyond Employment Law requirements, to protect both employees and employers alike. We love to hear from you, so call us on 0113 287 8150 or hit the Rescue Me button.

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