The Final Say

GMB is calling on the Prime Minister to give the British public the final say on the Brexit deal. If Theresa May can’t get a deal that works for working people then she must step aside.

If Theresa May is so confident in achieving a deal that working people, our economy and communities will benefit from then she should have nothing to fear from putting that to the test.   

It’s what we do as trade unionists - day in, day out we negotiate the best possible deal for our members before going back to see if they approve." 

Tim Roache, GMB General Secretary

In 2016, GMB union members, like the country, were divided on Brexit. Many people were sick of the status quo, and thought a vote to leave would bring the change they so desperately wanted. Others thought, on balance – despite some of the European Union’s imperfections - that we were still were better off in. By and large our 620,000 members are reflective of the public.

GMB campaigned to remain, but when the referendum result was announced in June 2016, we accepted the decision of the people.

But that doesn’t mean the public should be shut out of the entire process, blindly left to trust hard right Tories like Dominic Raab or Jacob Rees-Mogg in the far-fetched belief they will do what is right for us all. 

The people voted for Brexit, and it is again with the people that approval of the final deal should rest. That is why GMB is today calling for a public vote on the final deal.

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Ever since the referendum in 2016, GMB has repeatedly raised the industrial issues and practical concerns relating to our members’ jobs, rights and the Brexit process. Ministers have simply refused to listen.

We speak to employers who have been told virtually nothing about plans for next March – and are seriously worried about the future for their staff and their businesses.

GMB has not come to this decision lightly. We have spoken to thousands of our members and asked their views on who should have the final say on Brexit. Across every region, members believe that the power should rest in the hands of the people, there is just too much at stake.

As trade unionists, when we negotiate a pay deal with an employer, we go back to our members and ask them if they’re happy with it. Everyone gets to decide whether they want to accept or reject it. The government need to take a leaf out of our book, and be led by the people.

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