Final Say: National Union of Students backs The Independent's campaign for referendum on any Brexit deal

‘The younger generation will be the hardest hit if we leave with a bad deal or with no deal’

Eleanor Busby
Education Correspondent
Thursday 02 August 2018 10:31
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‘With the majority of students now backing a vote on the final Brexit deal, it is clear we need a say on our future’
‘With the majority of students now backing a vote on the final Brexit deal, it is clear we need a say on our future’

The National Union of Students – which represents 4.3 million students across the country – has backed The Independent’s call for a referendum on the Brexit deal.

MPs and organisations from across the political divide have shown their support for the Final Say campaign, with more than 400,000 people signing our petition since it was launched last week.

The campaign has now been endorsed by the NUS, which is made up of more than 530 affiliated member students’ unions in universities and colleges across the country.

Amatey Doku, vice president for higher education of the NUS, said: “I am proud to offer my support to the Final Say campaign on behalf of the millions students we represent from institutions across the UK.

“With the majority of students now backing a vote on the final Brexit deal, it is clear we need a say on our future.

“The chaos of the current Brexit negotiations means that those on all sides of the debate are now losing faith in the government’s approach.

“With the chances of a good deal dwindling by the day, it’s clear that our generation will be the hardest hit if we leave with a bad deal or without a deal at all.”

He added: “Students care about Britain’s future on the global stage – and that means protecting access to research, funding and educational expertise for our world-leading universities.

“There is great uncertainty within the sector about what the future of research and collaboration will be. That’s why I, and the millions of students we represent, are backing a people’s vote on the terms of the final deal.”

The former Conservative education secretary Justine Greening and the British Medical Association – which represents around 20,000 students – have also thrown their weight behind the campaign.

Recent polling revealed that the majority of students would back a vote on the final Brexit deal, as some 70 per cent believe they will be worse off after leaving the EU.

Support among young voters for a new referendum has surged from 58 per cent in February 2017 to 67 per cent this month, according to the survey of undergraduates conducted by Youthsight.

It was revealed last week that more than 1.4 million young people would be eligible to vote in a fresh referendum compared with the 2016 Brexit poll.

Analysis of the census data shows the group who have come of age since the EU referendum now outnumbers the Leave side’s 1.26 million majority over Remain.

Pro-EU MPs have questioned whether this demographic shift could “tip the scales” in a fresh poll amid growing speculation over the possibility that Theresa May’s plans could lead to no deal.

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