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What the Brexit will happen now?

July 1st 2016
The majority of UK citizens – 51.9 per cent – voted on June 23 for the country to leave the European Union. The result has left the country – even those who led the Leave campaign – reeling. David Cameron stood down as prime minister the next day, leaving it to his successor to enact Article 50, the clause in the Lisbon Treaty that will allow the UK officially to leave the EU.

As the Pavement went to press, the Conservative and the Labour parties were in meltdown. The Tories were still slugging it out as to who will be in charge next – Boris Johnson and Teresa May are two names on the table. But most still looked in shock; one journalist noted Conservative MP Michael Gove from the leave campaign “looked like a man who had just come down off a bad trip to find he had murdered one of his closest friends”.

In Scotland, where 62 per cent voted to remain in the EU, Nicola Sturgeon has emerged as the only one able to “keep the heid”, her manner compared to that of someone’s big cousin who’s arrived to sort out an under-age party that spiralled badly out of control. She’s looking for a way to keep Scotland in the EU regardless. If that fails, a second referendum on Scottish independence looks likely further down the line.

In Northern Ireland, where 55 per cent voted to remain, talks continue about how to enforce a border with the Republic of Ireland, which will remain in the EU. And all the while, others are looking for ways to back out of Brexit altogether; is it really legally binding? Can the Parliament block the decision? Unlikely, but the possibility is being discussed.

So how does it affect you? Will things get worse before they get better, or is this result the spark to ignite radical change that is needed?

1. Nothing will happen quickly
It’s important to remember that nothing, at least in terms of your rights or entitlements, will change until after Britain has left the EU and new laws to replace the relevant European ones have been passed in Parliament. That means all EU migrants will continue to live and work here as before and your human rights – right to vote, right to a fair trial, right to freedom to practice your religion, which are not taken for granted everywhere in the world – are still protected under EU law.

2. It may not change the situation of EU migrants that much
According to legal experts, it is almost certain that EU citizens who are already here and working/have worked with be given the right to stay, though those with a more insecure status (i.e., those who been here for more than three months but less than five years and without having worked) may find themselves in a grey area. However, regardless of leaving the EU, it looks likely that the UK would have to agree to the free movement of EU citizens in order to access to the single market (i.e., trade with EU countries without paying taxes or tariffs).

3. But it seems to be leading to more racism
From graffiti telling Poles to “go home” to racist abuse hurled at BBC news reporter Sima Kotecha, the mood has been ugly. Far Right Watch recorded 90 incidents in just the first few days. And the uncertainty might also mean it’s harder to access services because those in charge aren’t clear about entitlements. Right now, migrants need everyone’s support.

4. Affordable homes
Industry experts claim due to the inevitable economic crash, fewer affordable homes will be built, at least in the short term. The construction industry relies heavily on migrant workers, and any attempt to stem the flow may also affect the industry. It has been suggested that UK apprenticeships are desperately needed. Other commentators say this will ignite the radical type of housing solutions that have been needed for decades.

5. It may affect some homeless charities
Lots of charities are concerned that exit from the EU might lead to less funding. Others point out that the UK never took full advantage of the EU’s benefits in the first place. The €3.8 billion Fund for European Aid to the Most Deprived (FEAD) gives member states access to funds to help people escape poverty. But Matt Downie, director of policy at homelessness charity Crisis, explained: “The Germans take €80 million from this fund to help homeless people. But the UK only takes the minimum amount.”




New arrivals hit the streets

Soup Run Forum

Web only: Emergency Islington shelter remains open during sub-zero temperatures

Chairman of the board

Rest in peace - in memory of lost friends

Prince poses

Starter pack boost

Wearing a jacket to beg?

Teens found guilty of killing Ralph Millward

The Passage withdraws service "as a last resort"

New learning centre for Glasgow

iHobo game causes controversy

Auckland extends ban on rough sleepers

Homeless interrogation

Affordable housing development opens in Edinburgh

Who decides?

Credit unions

New counts are optional

Nobby on stage

I will never forget you, my people

London homeless services in limbo over ?Ǭ£3.28m cuts

Disused night shelter re-opened for winter months

Coventry Cyrenians forced to cut services

London hub success for new rough sleepers

Crisis Skylight in Birmingham - a year on

Residents look ahead to staff upheaval

Midland Heart report

Labour call for hefty council tax levy on empty homes

Stik pic for the American Church

Lottery grant means new opportunities

Mungo?¢‚Ǩ‚Ñ¢s launches women?¢‚Ǩ‚Ñ¢s campaign

Homeless people forced into slavery

Homeless couple marry in Australia

Number of homeless in Southend underestimated

Basic banking for all

NSNO expands into west London

Scottish homeless applications drop by 19 per cent

Miami cannibal

Invisible People film UK homeless

The demilitarised zone in North America’s drug war

2012 - the year of the right to permanent accommodation in Scotland?

Crisis at Christmas

The Pavement is recruiting

Rough sleeper donates $250 to charity

Food voucher scheme scrapped

Commemorating friends and companions

Human rights for all

First person: Gemskii on regaining control of her life

The shades come off

Upfront: spikes

Comment: Spikes are the least of your worries

Opinion: All up in smoke?

Heartbreak Hotel, episode 4.

The Pied Piper of Housing

March for the Homeless

Being homeless doesn't mean you can't vote on May 7

The vulnerability ruling

The Queen’s speech

Criminalising homelessness

116-bed hostel for young homeless to close in Southwark

Sponsor a bed and rebuild a life

Hipsters neutralise anti-homeless spikes

What the Brexit will happen now?

Anti-homelessness protesters threatened with eviction, jail by Manchester city council

Showing our impact


The birth of the North Gower Action Group

A pianist, an artist, a dog called George and a new homeless app

Living water

Midwinter blues?

Councils back change in law to tackle rising homelessness

Having problems with your JSA?

Mayoral hustings on homelessness


A major step in reducing homelessness?

Liverpool Police homeless curb beggars belief

Charity begins at home?

Legal aid charade

Surviving the streets – by those who've done it

Stop the scandal

Glasgow homeless services at risk

Bill gives councils legal duty to stop homelessness

Homeless Grenfell survivors afraid of deportation

Remembering those who have died in the past year

Safer injection action update

Alexander Withers

Kevin Headley


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© Copyright 2009-2014 The Pavement. Established 2005 Registered Charity No. 1110656 Scottish Charity Register No. SC043760 ISSN (online) 1757-0484