UK Council statement on Brexit
Statement by UK Council following the Enactment of Article 50 of the Treaty of Lisbon.
UK Council notes
1. On 29th March 2017 the UK Government enacted Article 50 of the Lisbon Treaty triggering the process which will lead to the United Kingdom’s withdrawal from the European Union thus implementing the decision taken on 23rd June 2016 when a majority of those voting, voted for the UK to leave the EU
2. There will follow a period of negotiation of up to two years between the UK Government and the EU on the exact terms of the withdrawal.
UK Council recognises
1. This has a profound impact on members in the four countries and that, while respecting the different views members will have on whether the decision taken on 23rd June 2016 is in the best interests of the U.K. and its citizens, it is important that, as the trade union and professional body for all working in radiography, the SoR uses its influence wherever it can to protect the interests of members, the profession and patients during these negotiations.
2. The precise impact on the four countries will vary with a possible second independence referendum in Scotland and questions over the validity of the Good Friday Agreement in Northern Ireland.
3. The specific impact on members living in Northern Ireland but working in the south if there is to be a hard border between the two countries and the need to ensure these members are informed and supported at every opportunity.
UK Council therefore resolves to work
1. On behalf of all members in the four countries by liaising closely with Regional Committees and National Councils to ensure priorities are identified quickly enabling the union to campaign purposefully during the negotiations and at the next general election, whether that is called early or takes place as expected in 2020.
UK Council has therefore identified the following initial campaign objectives
1. The guaranteed right for EU nationals living and working in the UK, including those who are members of ours, to remain in the UK with the retention of all existing rights.
2. The guaranteed right for UK nationals living and working in other EU countries, including those who are members of ours, to be able to continue to do so with the retention of all existing rights.
3. A guarantee that all employment protection legislation originating in the EU will be immediately enshrined in UK law with a further guarantee that there will be no repeal of this legislation. The development of Sustainable Transformation Plans increases the potential for members in the NHS to see their employer to change, combined with the regular change of ownership among private sector companies, places particular urgency on ensuring provisions that protect members when their employer changes, such as TUPE, are maintained post Brexit.
4. The retention of other legislation regulating working time and other health and safety issues post Brexit.
5. That the uncertainty created by Brexit is not allowed to adversely impact on the pay or job security of our members and not only is there no return to the pay freezes of the austerity years but that members’ standard of living rises.
6. That politicians prioritise the need to properly fund a free at the point of use UK wide NHS and that those now holding senior Government positions who argued during the Brexit campaign that leaving the European Union would enable more money to be spent on healthcare keep their word.
7. That throughout the negotiations particular attention is paid to the position of members working in Northern Ireland and Eire to ensure that should there be the creation of a hard land border between the UK and the EU this does not affect their ability to work as radiographers wherever they are qualified to do so.
UK Council believes these initial priorities must be pursued vigorously using all of the influence the Society can bring to ensure that whatever the outcome of the Brexit negotiations any adverse impact on those who work in radiography and those who, as patients, rely on our members is limited.
UK Council therefore urges members to contribute to the political fund to ensure we can pursue these priorities purposefully during the Brexit negotiations and the anticipated General Election to follow.