The European Union (Withdrawal) Bill published on July 13th proposes to transfer directly-applicable European Union law into the law of the United Kingdom as part of the country’s exit from the European Union.
This bill is widely considered to be one of the largest legislative projects ever undertaken in the UK with potentially significant implications for the social and political fabric of the country.
In particular organisations that work on human rights, the environment, consumer, workers’ rights, equality, democracy, food, farming, trade and education could potentially be profoundly affected with this Bill.
It is important that as this legislation makes it passage through parliament that sectors have a voice and are collaborating to ensure the best possible outcome and deal for our members, and wider civic society, as we leave the EU.
A number of grant-making Trusts and Foundations have agreed to fund a post that will co-ordinate capacity work on the Repeal Bill. This is to ensure that an alliance of campaign, advocacy and civic society organisations can be built to maximise the impact of the sector and to make sure individual and collective voices are heard.
In particular the focus will be on
- Open and accountable law making: democratic processes based on robust parliamentary scrutiny and safeguards against transfer of power to the executive
- A high standards UK: ensuring that as EU law is transposed into UK law standards for all sectors are maintained.
The alliance will NOT take a position on Brexit per se and will be in line with activity commensurate with charitable and non charitable purposes.
We won’t all be saying the same thing but there will be some things we can coalesce around, especially in terms of process. There is strength in numbers and a loose alliance means we can:
- Share information and best practice
- Advocacy work
- Pooling resources and expertise
- Help with capacity issues for smaller organisations
Specifically we will:
- Help to build a consensus around key and shared issues
- Signpost politicians and decisions-makers to areas of expertise and knowledge outside of Westminster and Whitehall
- Provide digital space and directory of resources and campaign material
- Develop a toolkit and support for smaller organisations
- Ensure civil society organisations understand the process and are able to use the law to protect and advance the rights of their beneficiaries
- Develop working groups to measure the impact of the Repeal Bill on different sectors and play an active role in influencing outcomes
- Effective and impactful lobbying and pressure during key moments
- Ensure transposition of EU law into UK law takes place with robust parliamentary scrutiny and without standards being lowered, or key protections lost