No-deal Brexit endangers poorest families

Brexit signpost credit MaxpixelThe United Reformed Church has joined the Baptist Union of Great Britain and the Methodist Church to call on the government to do all that it can to avoid an unplanned no-deal Brexit.

In a joint statement, the Church leaders said: 'We have chosen not to make political statements around Brexit.  Members of the Churches we represent have in good conscience come to different conclusions; some voted remain and others voted to leave. 

'At present the risks that flow from an unplanned no-deal Brexit endanger the poorest families in our nation and therefore we feel compelled to speak up.  

'As Christians we are called to demand justice for the millions locked in poverty. A no-deal Brexit risks tightening poverty’s grip on families up and down the country.

'Over the past decade, our Churches have witnessed and responded to the slowly rising tide of hunger in the UK.  A no-deal Brexit risks restricting the nation's supply of food and increasing prices. This, alongside further cuts to benefits on 8 April, could have grave consequences for many in our communities.

'Many charities are warning us that food supplies to the most vulnerable are most at risk: hospitals, prisons and those reliant on surplus or donated food.  Supplies of essential medicines are likely to be disrupted.  Again the most vulnerable will be the least able to cope with this.

'We urge that all possible efforts continue to be made to avoid an unplanned no-deal Brexit given the consequences for the most vulnerable in our society.  Should the decision, or indecision, of political leaders, together with a lack of preparation, expose the poorest to these risks, it will be the responsibility of government to ensure these families are protected.

'We continue to pray for our politicians and for all who are experiencing poverty.' 

Signed:
Mr Derek Estill, Moderator of the United Reformed Church General Assembly
The Revd Nigel Uden, Moderator of the United Reformed Church General Assembly
The Revd Lynn Green, General Secretary, Baptists Union of Great Britain
The Revd Michaela Youngson, President of the Methodist Conference
Mr Bala Gnanapragasam, Vice-President of the Methodist Conference

Picture: Brexit signposts/Maxpixel
Published: 10 April 2019