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View from the house: Our Brexit must secure our future

PUBLISHED: 08:00 17 June 2018

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I don’t think I can ever recall a more divided government than the current Tory one - with cabinet members routinely stabbing each other in the front, and the back.

The Brexit debate does throw up strong emotions, but most people in communities like ours just want to get on with it.

That’s what Labour are doing. While it would be preposterous to suggest we don’t have some differences, at least we are pulling together.

This week MPs were asked to vote on amendments to the EU Withdrawal Bill suggested by the House of Lords.

In particular, the European Economic Area Amendment set out a very specific way to achieve a new relationship with the Single Market by remaining in the EEA, the so-called Norway Model.

To my mind there were real drawbacks to this model and I was determined to vote for the best deal for the people of Dagenham and Rainham.

That means ensuring the Brexit people voted for in my constituency is delivered, but not at the expense of workers’ rights, our rights as citizens, or at a cost to environmental protections.

The alternative Labour amendment, which I backed, set out a framework to build a close future relationship with the EU, without creating a race to the bottom on workers’ rights or sabotaging future investment in the UK economy.

Importantly it also offered a viable solution to prevent Northern Irish hard border.

We have a massive amount of investment scheduled for Dagenham and Rainham, with the new film studios, thousands of new homes, new infrastructure including schools, medical centres, and other business developments.

It is vitally important that we establish a deal that protects our future. That is why I supported Labour’s Brexit plan which respected the Brexit vote, and the views of my constituents.


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