The Liberal Democrats are demanding that a £7.5 billion emergency fund is set aside to assist the estimated 750,000 people who will become jobless in the case of a No-Deal, the Government’s deal, and those who have lost their jobs already due to Brexit uncertainty.
A Brexit Support Fund would provide financial assistance through grants of up to £10,000 per person to help retrain those made unemployed by Brexit to get them back into work or help them set up a small business. The funding plan is similar to that used by European countries during the global financial crisis in 2008.
The damage Brexit is causing has already led three Conservative MPs to quit the Conservative party to join the Independent Group.
The Prime Minister’s disastrous handling of Brexit and failure to avert a No-Deal catastrophe, would result in stockpiled foods and medicines, absurd queues in Dover, increased nurse vacancies and further job losses due to businesses collapsing, relocating or downsizing.
The impact on business is already being seen due to the huge stress Brexit uncertainty has put on businesses both big and small. As a result growth in the UK is predicted to be the lowest in 10 years in 2019.
Liberal Democrat MP Tom Brake said:
"If the Government pushes the country into a damaging No-Deal Brexit in a vain attempt to keep the Tory party together, it will be their responsibility to protect the hundreds of thousands of people whose jobs will be lost.
"The Liberal Democrats have said time and again that the only way to protect people’s jobs and livelihoods is to give them the final say in the matter through a People’s Vote."
Tom Brake tabled an Amendment (Amendment i) today to the Government’s Brexit motion calling for the Government to establish the fund immediately. The text of the cross-party amendment is as follows:
At end, add “; notes that, according to a cautious UK Trade Policy Observatory prediction, an estimated 750,000 people would become jobless if the UK left the EU with no deal; and accordingly calls on the Government to create an emergency Brexit Support Fund of at least £7.5 billion to mitigate job losses caused by Brexit uncertainty, a No Deal Brexit or the PM’s deal, with the fund being ring-fenced to support UK workers made redundant as a result of businesses leaving the UK, closing down or downsizing as a result of the impact of Brexit, and to offer workers the chance to receive advice or re-training to help them secure employment or start a new business.”.