South west London MPs warn of potentially ‘catastrophic’ effects of no deal Brexit

By Aliss Higham
October 4 2019, 17.45

MPs across south west London have voiced their fears for hospitals, medication and businesses in the area if a no-deal Brexit goes through at the end of the month. 

Prime Minister Boris Johnson has promised to take the UK out of the European Union on the October 31, saying he would ‘rather be dead in a ditch’ than ask for a further extension. 

South west London voted overwhelmingly to remain, with boroughs such as Richmond, Wandsworth and Merton voting 62% or higher in favour of remain.

Vince Cable, Liberal Democrat MP for Twickenham, expressed concern over how the potential drain of EU nationals could threaten local hospitals and St Mary’s University.

His party has been gaining steady momentum since it outlined that if they won a general election they would revoke Article 50 and cancel Brexit entirely.

He said: “Especially vulnerable are the large number of EU nationals whose status is unclear; the university which potentially loses students, staff and research funding; the two hospitals, Kingston and West Middlesex, which will lose EU staff; and the many staff and entrepreneurs whose business is negatively affected by loss of access to the EU.”

Stephen Hammond, an Independent MP for Wimbledon, is among the Tory MPs who had the whip removed in September after voting for a bill which aimed at preventing a no-deal Brexit.

He said: “There is a high percentage of EU nationals here who deserve to have their right to be here protected.

“In Wimbledon there are a lot of small businesses who will certainly be the worst affected due to the economic uncertainty a no-deal would cause. 

“There are also many haulage firms with a base in Wimbledon who face uncertainty over the border.”

Mr Hammond has consistently campaigned to remain and voted in favour of Theresa May’s deal three times. 

“A no-deal Brexit is not the end that people think it is – it is the beginning of a very long process towards the end,” he said.

Marsha De Cordova (pictured above), MP for Battersea and Shadow Minister for Disabilities, said the government has been ‘reckless’ and that no deal would be ‘catastrophic’.

She expressed concern over her most vulnerable constituents having access to medical supplies. 

She said: “Millions of ill and disabled people will face critical shortages of vital medicines because of delays at the border.”

The government has announced a ban on exporting some drugs to protect NHS patients’ access, but has not specified which ones.

She added: “A no-deal Brexit would have a devastating impact on the people of Battersea, threatening livelihoods and jobs. 

“The Yellowhammer papers have revealed the seismic effect of a no deal on local businesses as well the disproportionate harm that rises of fuel and food prices will have on low income communities in Battersea.”

She also showed backing for a referendum on the terms of Brexit.

“I will do all I can to defend our democracy and fight against no deal Brexit. The people of Battersea deserve a final say on the future of our country,” she said.

Feature image credit: Chris McAndrew.

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