Is Brexit trashing your future? Here’s how to help stop it

by Luke Lythgoe | 09.03.2018

Young people will have to live with the crappy consequences of Brexit for decades to come. But it’s not too late to stop it. As Theresa May’s Brexit botch-job unravels, there’s a real possibility that she’ll be forced to flip the final deal back to the people. We need to be ready – here’s how.

Register to vote

If and when the people do get a vote on May’s terms, young people need to be able to vote. Make sure you’re registered to vote in the town you’ll be, or at least have a backup plan like a proxy or postal vote.

Support youth campaigns

Until some voting happens, there are plenty of groups keeping the anti-Brexit message alive now, including youth-specific movements like Our Future Our Choice (OFOC) and the Young European Movement. Sign up to their email alerts and follow them on social media to find out about events happening near you.

Pressure the politicians

Consider joining one of the big political parties. What their members think matters, and that could sway the way MPs vote in Parliament. Or simply contact your local MP and make your Brexit thoughts known.

Let family and friends know how you feel

You’re in a network too. Explain to Leave-voting family and friends why Brexit is terrible for your future. David Cameron might not have been a trusted voice, but yours could be. At the very least your gran will like you coming round for a cup of tea.

Guerrilla activism on social media

You don’t have to be part of a well-funded nationwide campaign to have a voice. Politics is about guerrilla activism online these days – it did wonders for Corbyn in the election. Film some funny (but obviously not dangerous) anti-Brexit stunts, create some shareable anti-Brexit artwork, start an anti-Brexit YouTube channel. Keep throwing stuff out there. Share it with the bigger campaigns. The more eyeballs on it the better.

Get informed

Much of the media – including the BBC – is helping the government make Brexit seem inevitable. Thankfully, there are plenty of places to find strong pro-European arguments – not least InFacts.

DO NOT despair

It may sound cheesy, but at the moment stopping Brexit is a state of mind. We have to believe it can still happen – because it can. We still live in a democracy, and in democracies people have the right to change their minds. As Brexit looks worse and worse, as Leave campaign promises fall by the wayside, the British people have a right to say stop.

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Edited by Hugo Dixon

16 Responses to “Is Brexit trashing your future? Here’s how to help stop it”

  • How can I fight this battle when I go and check out my local MP (using your links above) only to find out that he seems to be Rees-Mogg-in-Waiting? I unfortunately live in an area full of old folk and Tories, none of whom seem to give a toss about the bigger picture outwith their own little enclave.

    I’ve just read his blog on-line only to feel total dispair at his narrow, jingoistic attitude to Brexit, stating that there cannot ever be a second referendum, because two years ago all of the party representitives agreed there couldn’t. Has nothing changed in his limited, blinkered little world since then?

    Does the country not have the right to rethink its decision as more and more of the facts now become apparent. Then they knew nothing. Today they know far more. Is that not enough reason to hold a second referendum and let everyone make this momentous and life changing decision again, rather than just sticking their heels in and being stubbornly complacent like a spoilt school boy.

    I think if Jeremy Corbyn agreed that we should stay in the Single Market as well as the Customs Union, then I think this whole fight would take on a new momentum, and we could steam-roll the government into submission, keeping some, if not all of our national credibility, and not give in to the extremists who’ve gotten hold of this country at present.

  • In total agreement. There is no doubt that the country has been ‘ taken over ‘ so to speak by a terrible ideology, normally quite alien to the English way of doing things. The arch brexiteers- Europhobes- are still so surprised to have won the referendum that they will do anything to prevent a second one which they fear losing. They only want to ” Leave ” and to hell with the consequences because they believe that the English are a superior race who need to fear nothing.

  • Hi Lisa,
    Do not be fooled by this type of article. After BREXIT the changes will be almost imperceptible to the majority of people.

    You will still need to show ID when you leave and enter the country and you will also be taxed as much as you are now. We will have regained our sovereignty in a major way however we will still need to cooperate on defence and security. Additionally there will be a ton of other stuff we do together. In terms of immigration, we will still need loads of immigrants to work here and there will be a ton of Brits who work and study abroad.
    When we look back in 20 years time, we will be a proud nation state which is a great place to live and work. Out perception of BREXIT will be a period of time when we changed our trading relationship with Europe and a period of time when we strengthen our relationship with the Commonwealth and the rest of the world.

    The follow up studies of who actually voted for BREXIT are quite interesting and paint a very different picture to which is currently painted in the media. Listen to this from the BBC.


    Jeremy Corbyn has always disliked the EU and has always wanted to leave. It would be good if he was honest with the electorate.

  • Hi Lisa, stick to your guns. Don’t be misled by smooth talking Brexiteers, although they are preferable……if equally destructive……to the rabid ones. If Brexit is inevitable, which I don’t believe, then the only advantage for the future will be that Westminster’s failings will no longer be able to be blamed on the EU. But I’m afraid this realisation will take a long time coming. I’ve seen the value of the Great British Pound sterling halve against the US Dollar in my lifetime…..was this falling off a cliff? No, just a painful slide downwards affecting standards of living and provision of services. I suppose that was a triumph of Democracy as well. Really?

  • Hi Lisa,
    Totally agree with Roger, I am not convinced it will be business as usual over time with the EU. The more likely scenario is that the poorest people in society will continue to see a fall in the their living standards and stagnation in their wages. The hard line Brexiteers know this will be the case, but their eye is on the preservation of UK tax havens and their business interests outside the EU. The treasury report of April 2016 at the link below doesn’t paint a pretty picture, even if we managed to stay in the Single Market and some sort of Customs Union. Page 7 shows the link between Impact on the Economy to Impact on a typical family for 3 different models. Plotting the data shows that 1% on society is approx. £700 to a family. Of course the data could be out as it is a prediction but given that a family with a Disposable income of £30,000 pa probably pays about the cost of McDonald’s for 4 per year to the EU budget, it doesn’t seem like a great deal to anyone is numerate.


  • Lisa, don’t despair.

    If you can, come to the Leeds #stopbrexit event on 24 March. It’s just one of many happening on that day, and many other days in the future. There are many of us who don’t and won’t accept that it’s all over, and public opinion is turning in our direction. Come and meet us.

    Your MP probably doesn’t represent your view in lots of other ways too. Change him! Campaign to get a different MP elected. This might even involve joining his party and supporting a different candidate. Be creative.


  • The referendum result was based partially on lies, deceit and prejudice. Prior to the referendum, surveys, e.g. British Social Attitudes, showed that approximately 30%.of the population admitted they were racially prejudiced. Around 10 million of the 33 million referendum voters were probably swayed by the anti immigration vote especially race together with cultural and religious bias. These voters were very unlikely to understand the economic damage leaving the EU would cause since their vote was swayed by emotion and not logic and knowledge. Great Britain
    has now become little Britain and an embarrassment to tolerant and fair minded people. I am concerned that another referendum would still be biased, maybe
    a General Election could be the answer.

  • Please don’t blame all the older generation for brexit. We are in our 70’s but voted remain. We are very upset about leaving. We feel European and wanted to remain so.

  • James,
    How do you know things will be the same ? What evidence backs up your assumption.? We have absolutely no idea how Brexit will affect our ability to enter Europe, nor as yet how we will get there. Mrs May has finally realised that she needs some EU organisations, so that aircraft can operate, medicines can enter the country, that we can cooperate in security data exchange and so on. Sadly she has not actually understood that some of these do not allow third party countries to join these clubs.. that’s is going to be a problem. Don’t actually remember anyone mentioning these issues, and every day it becomes clearer that nobody could have possibly had the full picture before the referendum. Consequently, we must get to choose, once some sort of agreement is made as to wether or not we as a country should accept it.

  • Response to Lisa Jelley
    Dear Lisa,
    I fully appreciate all the bitterness, frustration and helplessness which comes out in your message, and which no doubt a great many British pro-Europeans experiece, towards the Brexit politicians. I used to feel the same, but then decided to inform myself about Brexit everyday, online, and it changed my attitude.
    Slowly, it has dawned upon me that actually, during the course of the last 6 months, the Brexit debate has changed. Across a lot of the sensible media it has veered sharply away from simply voicing “the inevitable” , “great concern” and “doom and disaster” to now “we’ve got a chance”, “wow, I didn’t really believe it was going to lead to all this happening”, “it looks like Brexit might not happen”, or via Nigel Farage of all people “I think we need a second referendum”. Massive shifts.
    Why? It’s simply that the Tory Government and the Tory Party, as well as the rest of the UK, has now experienced the Brexit debade. This never happened before the referendum. All is being laid bare – the myths and claims made by Brexiters are being broken. The forces of “good” started all this with British politicians in parliament receiving a “veto” over the legislation being created for Brexit. They have the final say over legislation. This has been equally well supported by leading European negotiators or politicians in refuting and knocking back any Tory Government proposals for Brexit. Finally, we have now seen that the majority in parliament is actually pro-European.
    Adding further support to the drama are the real-life stories about the effects upon the economy, and slowly but surely prominent businessmen and women are making public statements from their organisations about where they intend to remove their businesses to if the government continues to risk the economy any further. You know, this feeds job losses, and loss of important tax revenue, vital factual economic information to politicians in general but also to politicians whose constituencies may be affected by job losses. The TUC is pro-European as is the CBI. To cap it all the Brexit polls are showing shifts in attitude towards remain.
    Where do you find all this information? There’s enough out there via not just InFacts, but also The Guardian, The Observer, the Independent, and an exellent blog by Professor Chris Grey, at https://chrisgreybrexitblog.blogspot.de/
    Furthermore, there is now an umbrella group, the GCG (Grassroots Coordinating Group), led by MP Chuka Umunna, to coordinate diverse pro-Europe groups (i.e. the all‐party Parliamentary Group on EU Relations; Open Britain; Best for Britain; the European Movement UK; InFacts; Scientists for EU; Healthier IN the EU; Britain for Europe; and The New European newspaper.)
    By the way, there is a campaign to ensure that the 550,000 extra young voters available for voting in any new referendum are registered is underway.
    I can assure you that once I started feeding the above to my family it changed their thoughts and preceptions rapidly – there is hope yet, and plenty of it! Please note that I’m only a normal citizen, just like you, with no affiliations to anything in the political or journalistic world. Therefore, please just start reading and spread the word, and start doing your bit and infuse some energy into your friends and family .
    Best of luck,

  • Please Brexiters posting on here, tell me one way we will be better off out? Don’t use the sovereignty argument. Nor it’s democracy. I will tackle those here.

    We won’t get our sovereignty back, as we would have to leave, the UN, pull out of the Paris Agreement, leave NATO, leave the IMF, I could go on. In this globalised world sovereignty is pretty much dead in the water.

    In terms of democracy and laws that the EU has passed, I agree some of this unpalatable, as have been laws passed by the Tories and Labour before them. In a democracy we agree to accept them and can change our minds at the next election. The council of ministers in the EU are our elected ministers. Our MEPs are our elected MEPs. I agree with brexiters about the appointed commissioners. They are appointed, but are appointed by their country’s head of state. Who of course are elected. The commission is accountable to the EU Parliament. The elected ( by us) EU Parliament can dismiss one or all commissioners if it so desires. The commission proposes laws but does not make them. The EU Parliament does that.
    The UK has benefitted (IMHO) from some ( and I agree not all) these laws. In no particular order and off the top of my head,: 48 hour working time directive, freedom to work, live, retire in any part of the EU, the city where I live has benefitted from grants from the EU that were not forthcoming from the Tory govt or for that matter the labour govt.; free trade, the customs union, 3.1 million jobs directly related to the exports to the EU, ( less now as businesses are moving operation out of the UK) Subsidies to farmers providing job stability to about half a million agricultural workers, air travel benefits, if there is no consulate in a country you travelling to you can use any EU consulate or embassy, consumer protections through high standards, both in terns of safety and purchasing rights, crime Cooperation, over terrorism, paedophiles, people taffikers and cyber warfare,Gordon Brown suggested we should be leading the EU not leaving it, and 70 years of peace(ish) in Europe. Now I don’t refute we can do all these things once we have left, but with the rise of China, Russia and India, we are seeing the global centre of economic gravity shifting east. On our own we will be isolated like North Korea. Kim Jon May anyone?

  • Hi Lisa,

    You wrote a very articulate letter on here, expressing your frustration with the Brexit process. That means you can join in the fight. Write a similar letter to JRM-in-waiting. He won’t change his mind, and you will probably get a supercilious reply, but you are still a voter and you are entitled to approach him with your concerns. Write to your local paper as well. Find out if there are any local pro-EU groups in your area. I live in an area of mainly Tory Brexit-voting people, but there is an active group in the neighbouring town, less than 20 miles away. If you use social media look out for facebook groups or use the FBPE twitter handle to find out what other people are doing. Above all, don’t let them get you down by saying it’s inevitable, it’s democracy, or it’s not going to make any difference.

  • The damage to businesses in all kinds of sectors, where we learn of new examples almost on a daily basis,with their resulting knock on effects to the economy, are all bad enough, but actually I don’t think these are the worst results of Brexit. Howeve, I think it is the negative social effects on this country’s wider standing in Europe, which are far worse.
    I have alot of contact with other Europeans and their reactions vary from bemusement, sadness, to a sense of feeling let down. I follow a German Expats forum and many Germans who came here thinking this to be a dynamic, interesting and open society, are now just sick of it all, and many are voting with their feet. This will come back to bite us in the next generation.
    Alot of Brexiteers seem very confused as to which part of the world we inhabit. If they were to take out their atlas they would find we are neither in the mid Pacific , nor 10 miles of Manhattan, but in Europe. The decisive events in our history, have been inextricably tied to events on the continent. At a time when Europe is putting its conflicts behind, and wanting to work closer together, it seems perverse to want to go out on a limb.
    A peaceful stability in Europe, is in all our interests, but it doesn’t happen by accident. The other main European nations, particularly the French and Germans understand that. It involves taking responsibility. Britain is doing the equivalent of running into its own little corner and pulling up the drawbridge. Brexit is all about the Brexit lovers own little world which cannot accept any wider responsibility for anywhere beyond its borders.

  • @Lisa
    I’ve been collecting links to campaigns, organizations and events opposing Brexit for nearly 18 months now (as well as news and commentary). You can find them on http://brexology.uk (right-hand side).

    It might cheer you to know that the list keeps growing – and I’m absolutely sure I don’t have everything on there and that it will continue to grow.

    Keep up the good fight. You are not alone and our numbers are growing.

    Meanwhile UKIP are collapsing. There are perhaps only 60 MPs ideologically committed to Brexit. And the main Leave campaigners are now running scared of the looming reality as their delusions are falling away and more people are realizing this.