European Union


British people want to remain in the EU single market after Brexit

by Ray Clancy on May 23, 2017

The decision by the UK to leave the European Union is still causing divisions with the Brexit process creating anxiety and resentment, according to new research.

People want Britain to remain part of the single European market and believe that if skilled people from EU countries have a job then they should be allowed to work and love in the country.

There is a broad consensus that the UK should remain in the single European market even although politicians in the EU have stated this is only possible if the freedom of movement for workers is retained while the British Government has said it will seek to reduce numbers coming from the EU.

The research by Professor Catherine Barnard and Dr Amy Ludlow from the law department at the University of Cambridge gathered the views of hundreds of people across the East of England through a series of debates and workshops in schools, community centres and even a prison, as well as gathering views in streets and town squares.

This fieldwork was conducted in locations ranging from the strongly pro-Brexit, including the Lincolnshire town of Boston where the highest Leave vote at 75% was recorded, to Remain strongholds such as the city of Cambridge itself, which voted 73.8% to stay.

The researchers found that when the public were asked to indicate preferences on the big issues of Brexit, many participants wanted full Single Market access with no free movement or payment to the EU.

However, when people were presented with so called hard Brexit options, including non-membership of the Single Market, they recognised the need for compromise, and reached an overall consensus that a deal closer to the EEA ‘Norway model’ might be best, at least in the short term.

‘The European Economic Area option was consistently seen by Leave and Remain voters alike to be an acceptable compromise that allows limits to freedom of movement and reduces the UK’s financial contribution to the EU. People wanted full access to trade in goods and services with the EU,’ said Barnard.

‘There was an almost universal desire among the study’s participants for EU citizens who are economically active or want to study in the UK to be able to continue to come,’ she added.

The research also found that people on both sides of the debate expressed regret about the sense of division caused by Brexit. Some also reported feeling embarrassed or awkward in their relationships with EU nationals. There was also significant anxiety among participants about what might come next.

‘We found anxiety, but also resentment. Many young people, including those in prominent Leave voting areas, expressed anger at the referendum, and a result they felt they would be living with for the rest of their lives,’ Barnard explained.

The researchers also found a serious, often fundamental, lack of knowledge about the EU. Many people struggled to articulate specific examples of the EU’s impact on their lives beyond infamous ‘euro myths’ such as the banning of bendy bananas. Many said they didn’t understand what they were voting for.

The most commonly cited example of a positive EU impact was no mobile phone roaming charges. Some young people also mentioned the arrival of high street brands such as Spanish company Zara.

In general, however, Barnard and Ludlow found that it was easier for people who voted Leave to provide examples of how they felt the EU had interfered too much than it was for Remain voters to give concrete examples of the EU’s benefit.

‘A key reason many people gave for voting Remain was inertia, that they saw no good reason to change the status quo. Leave voters could more often give a range of reasons for their vote, from immigration and a perceived erosion of British identity to the promise of additional healthcare funding,’ Ludlow said.

{ 0 comments }

Thumbnail image for EU students still able to access UK funding for universities

EU students still able to access UK funding for universities

May 15, 2017 Britain

Students from the European Union will still be eligible for financial support if they are applying for a university course beginning in the 2018/2019 academic year even although it finishes after Brexit. The British Government has confirmed that EU students will continue to remain eligible for undergraduate, master’s, postgraduate and advanced learner financial support. Under […]

Read the full article →
Thumbnail image for Low international outlook among young people in the UK

Low international outlook among young people in the UK

April 20, 2017 Europe

Half of young people in the UK do not regard themselves as European and many travel abroad much less than their counterparts in other countries, new research has found. Overall exposure to different nationalities is low among 18 to 30-year-olds, only half believe that they have a European identity and one in five do not […]

Read the full article →
Thumbnail image for Number of EU nationals looking to work in UK has fallen steeply since beginning of 2017

Number of EU nationals looking to work in UK has fallen steeply since beginning of 2017

March 30, 2017 European Union

Britain has now triggered the official process of leaving the European Union which will be completed by at least March 2019, but already fewer Europeans are looking for jobs in the UK. The latest research suggests that there has been an 18% drop in numbers of Europeans searching online for work in the UK since […]

Read the full article →
Thumbnail image for More confusion likely over US visas this week

More confusion likely over US visas this week

March 6, 2017 America

People seeking visas for the United States and Americans seeking visas for European Union countries are set to face increased confusion. First of all American President Donald Trump is set to announce yet another executive order dealing with who can and cannot get a visa for the US later this week and secondly the European […]

Read the full article →
Thumbnail image for Database set up for British expats worried about Brexit to combat rumour and fake news

Database set up for British expats worried about Brexit to combat rumour and fake news

February 27, 2017 European Union

A database is being set up for British expats living in the European Union who are worried about how they will be affected by Brexit to give them reliable information for making informed decisions. There are concerns that expats who do not have the most reliable information could end up making life changing decisions, such […]

Read the full article →
Thumbnail image for Healthcare worries main concern of British expats in EU countries

Healthcare worries main concern of British expats in EU countries

January 23, 2017 European Union

Expats from around Europe have explained to a British parliamentary group their fears surrounding the decision by the country to leave the European Union, especially over healthcare. The representatives of expat groups in Spain, France, Belgium, Italy, Poland and Romania, voiced their concerns at a meeting last week of the House of Commons Brexit Select […]

Read the full article →
Thumbnail image for EU expats in the UK are deeply anxious about their future, report reveals

EU expats in the UK are deeply anxious about their future, report reveals

December 19, 2016 European Union

European Union expats in the UK and British people living in other EU countries are deeply anxious about their future, according to a new report. Since the referendum result in June some have been subjected to verbal abuse but all are very concerned about what will happen to their rights to live and work, with […]

Read the full article →
Thumbnail image for EU citizens want to stay in the UK after Brexit

EU citizens want to stay in the UK after Brexit

December 5, 2016 Britain

Brexit has created a time of uncertainty for expats across Europe and it would seem that most want to stay where they are and are willing to change their status to do so. In the UK there are millions of citizens from other European Union countries who have been working and living in the country […]

Read the full article →
Thumbnail image for International Students Rate Norway as Top Country in Europe

International Students Rate Norway as Top Country in Europe

October 22, 2016 Britain

Want to attend university abroad? New research might help you decide on your decision. International students rate Norway as top in terms of satisfaction, followed by Ireland, Poland, Finland, and the UK to round out the top five – this according to a report from Study Portals. Students were asked by Study Portals, which compares […]

Read the full article →
Thumbnail image for UK Immigration Taskforce to Draw up New Proposals for EU Workers

UK Immigration Taskforce to Draw up New Proposals for EU Workers

October 20, 2016 Education

An immigration taskforce in the UK is set to draw up a set of proposals that would reduce the number of people moving to the country to less than 100,000, with individuals likely to be required to find work before being able to get a visa. It would mean that citizens from European Union countries […]

Read the full article →
Thumbnail image for Brits started looking for jobs abroad after Brexit vote

Brits started looking for jobs abroad after Brexit vote

July 27, 2016 European Union

Tens of thousands of British people are considering moving abroad to work as a result of the referendum vote to leave the European Union, according to new research. The study from Indeed, one of the biggest global job sites, found a 77% surge in Britons looking for work in the United States, making the country […]

Read the full article →
Thumbnail image for British expat pensioners already hit by Brexit due to currency fluctuations

British expat pensioners already hit by Brexit due to currency fluctuations

July 5, 2016 European Union

Retired British expats with state pensions living in countries such as Canada, Australia, South Africa, New Zealand and the United States are already suffering as the result of the UK’s decision to leave the European Union. They receive their pension from the UK in Sterling and it is not index linked, as it is for […]

Read the full article →