The Shropshire Party is neither a party of remain nor a party of leave. Therefore, we do not take an official position on the question of whether or not the United Kingdom should be a member of the European Union.
Brexit is a complex and deeply divisive issue which may have substantial impacts on our county and its communities. Our policy is to seek to represent our local communities and stand up for them, without taking sides with either ‘leavers’ or ‘remainers’. Our aim is to reach out across the divide which currently tears across our society and political landscape.
Some of our members and supporters will have voted leave and others will have voted remain in 2016 and they may continue to argue for or against these positions today. We endeavour to respect the diversity of views and principles within our party and without. Brexit is undoubtedly the issue of the day and in our stance we do not seek to either avoid it or to diminish it or the strength of feeling behind those who voted one way or another. Our intention is to speak up for the needs, interests and hopes of local communities around Shropshire.
Our candidates will be free to take positions according to personal conscience on issues relating Brexit which are not covered by the points below or otherwise agreed party policy. But in so doing they must be clear that they are not necessarily representing the views of the Shropshire Party or of its members.
The following points have been agreed as Shropshire Party policy relating to Brexit:
- The government, MPs and parliament to work together in a non-partisan manner towards resolving the Brexit crisis which grips the political establishment and is preventing the normal governance of the UK.
- We demand that all parties and politicians in Westminster respect the democratic processes of the United Kingdom and the constitution. This includes, but is not limited to, respecting the votes cast in the 2016 referendum on EU membership; respecting the sovereign parliament and the House of Commons, as the only body elected to represent the people; being at all times respectful of the fundamental dignity, integrity, privacy and views of MPs and other political actors; and respecting the independence of the media and of the judiciary.
- The UK government must seek to safeguard the needs, concerns and interests of British agriculture, farmers and rural businesses after Brexit. Our future trading relationship with the world must deliver the same benefits as EU membership has done. This means ensuring adequate market access for both exports and imports, balanced with sufficient protection from cheap foreign imports of agricultural goods that do not meet UK standards for food safety, traceability and animal welfare.
- If elected, Shropshire Party MPs will put the interests of Shropshire and its local communities first. This means speaking up for local businesses of all sizes and types that may be impacted in different ways by Brexit; it means speaking up for our towns and villages, charities, community groups and organisations and citizens young and old; it means working with other MPs to hold the government to account, whichever party may be in power; it means working to promote sensible, pragmatic and fair solutions to address Brexit.