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Former foes unite over EU ballot

Three politicians who were competing against each other for a seat in Parliament this time last year have joined forces to urge local people to vote to remain in the European Union at the referendum being held on 23rd June. Filton and Bradley Stoke’s Labour, Liberal Democrat and Green 2015 candidates have issued an open letter following the launch meeting of the constituency’s ‘Stronger In’ campaign at Little Stoke on Thursday evening.

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The open letter to voters reads:

“This time last year we were campaigning as candidates on behalf of our respective political parties in the Filton and Bradley Stoke constituency.  12 months on and we are working together as we campaign to remain within the European Union.
 
While each political party has a slightly different emphasis on what is important for Britain within the European Union, our main goals are the same. These include:

• To ensure the medium and long term safety of British citizens and children by combating climate change and reducing war, with the ongoing damage and refugee crises they bring. 
• To improve the wealth and wellbeing of all British citizens by reducing poverty and by reducing inequality.
• To protect and improve the basic human rights of citizens, which we enjoy within Europe and which have been hard won and have been tried and tested over decades.
 
We believe that, with hard work, these goals are more likely to be achieved if Britain continues to be a full and active member of the EU. The task will be far harder if we vote to leave.
 
We fear that this referendum may be a distraction from the more urgent needs that our government should be addressing. These include the severe difficulties faced by our National Health Service; poverty and increasing inequality within Britain; the migrant crisis; violent conflict across large parts of the Middle East and the African continent; to undertake our agreed commitment to limit global climate change to 1.5 degrees C. These problems have reached critical proportions and require immediate, dedicated attention and leadership. We need to take a clear look at these pressing needs now and to insist that our government, and the EU, address them. Uncertainty and delays of even a few months cause untold hardship.
 
We hope that every person in Filton and Bradley Stoke who agrees with us will use their vote to stay in the EU and will add their voice to this local call for change for the better.
 
Cllr. Ian Boulton, Labour;  Peter Bruce, Liberal Democrat;  Dr. Diana Warner, Green


Labour’s Ian Boulton, who is the deputy leader of the Labour councillors on South Gloucestershire Council, comments:

“Labour believes that by the strength of our common endeavour we achieve more than we achieve alone, and I certainly think that applies to the UK’s membership of the European Union. Here in Filton & Bradley Stoke a lot of our area’s prosperity comes from the location of organisations here that have strong working and trading links with the rest of Europe. I urge voters not to put our future at risk and to use their vote on 23rd June to remain.”

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