Why I Will Be Voting to Remain IN the European Union

Picture by Shaun Fellows / Shine Pix Labour Party Councillors photography. Pictured is Cllr Phil Bateman

Picture by Shaun Fellows / Shine Pix

On my Social Media sites I continue to get asked why I am going to vote to remain in the European Union. This is my personal reasons for voting IN.

I shall be using my vote in the up – coming referendum to Vote to Remain inside the European Union.

I have said many times in the last few weeks that the  EU is not perfect. It is certainly in need of reform. But it is better to be in than outside of the EU.

I fear that if we vote to take the Country out of the EU that our economy will slide very quickly. It is a gamble that I will not take.

If we leave the EU. All the hard work to invite and attract foreign investment and the thousands of jobs foreign investment brings will likely disappear. Leaving our economy on the slide. That would be bad for Wednesfield and Wolverhampton. My fear is that within hours of Britain voting for the exit strategy. Share prices crumble,  the value of the £ would be hit, ordinary people and their pension funds could then be in that spiral of decline pushing us as a nation and a City into a worsening economic position. That scenario would be catastrophic for my friends, relatives and constituents, and I care greatly for all of them!

Interest rates could rise, and job losses and the following increase in mortgages rates could mean more homes re –possessed. Those economic actions by themselves would downsize our economy. Creating instability in the Local economy, add more to the thousands of people who are with a home. Make it more difficult for everyday issues that a Local Councillor like I deal with daily.

Less Government income from tax in all its forms, will affect Local Government and we could have even more and longer austerity measures set by Government. This would attack all we hold dear in Wednesfield and Wolverhampton. Education, social services and the NHS. All the services Local Government delivers would be likely on shaky grounds.

In 2012 when I returned to the City Council after a 4 year break. We were in the clutches of Austerity and the Government was reducing payments to the City Council drastically. As you know we have lost more than 50% of our grant to date. This has had a severe impact on what the Local Authority can do.

I have as a Councillor been hearing the pain of those cuts from my constituents ever since. At that time a report prepared for the Wolverhampton Welfare Reform Board told Councillors many households in the City suffer from a high degree of indebtedness, with the continued cost of servicing the debt. At that time there was already Outstanding County Court Judgements exceeding £80m, shutting out households from  accessing High Street credit and pushing them towards expensive payday loans – at that time running at nearly 32,000 in this City alone!

I feel that the exiting the European Union will fuel a similar situation. If the economy tumbles mortgage rates rise, job losses kick in, and foreign investment takes flight. I know many families here in my Ward will once again suffer. In all conscience I cannot support that type of gamble.

I don’t feel that I can make that gamble with those concerns I currently have for the economy. Its this very personal point that will be driving my desire to Vote to Remain in the EU. I hope this explains further why I shall Vote Remain on the 23rd June. CjsemViWEAAOBv0 IN!IMG_1240 Phil In


Phil Bateman

Phil Bateman is Married to Mary and lives in Wednesfield North. He was a long serving local politician having served previously on the now defunct West Midlands County Council... read more


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