The People’s Pledge is the politically independent campaign for an EU referendum. We believe whatever our relationship with Europe is to be, the British people should have the say on what that is.
Europe has changed
Our place in Europe has been debated for decades. There was a referendum in 1975 on our membership of the Common Market, which was simply a trading arrangement. Since then, there have been five further treaties that have resulted in the development of the European Union. Europe now has a political purpose as well as the original economic one.
Some people want to come out
Although much of the wider British public holds no view abut Europe, many people care deeply about our relationship with our fellow European nations. Some of us believe that our membership of the EU has reduced British sovereignty leaving us subject to laws over which we have little or no democratic say, and is an unnecessary and very costly association. They believe Britain would be stronger economically and politically by separating from Europe and just trading with it.
Some people want to stay in
Others believe that we should be in Europe as full partners able to influence the decisions taken at that level, which affect all our lives. They believe that for Britain to risk alienating a single market of 500 million people turning over €10 trillion, and to have to pay a heavy price to trade with it, would be folly. They believe that politically and economically, membership of the EU prevents Britain falling between the cracks of the big global power blocks of the USA, China, Russia, India.
The People’s Pledge wants democracy
The People’s Pledge is a neutral organisation. We are neither Eurosceptic nor Europhile, although we have plenty of both – and members of all political parties –supporting or working for the campaign. We all share a passionate belief in democracy. We all believe that there should be a national vote on whether we stay in Europe or come out. No-one in Britain under the age of 55 has had the opportunity to vote on our relationship with Europe.
The British people want a say
The three main British political parties have all promised EU referendums of one sort or another in recent years. All of them are now scared of suggesting one, afraid that the British people might actually vote to leave the EU. The polls show that 70% of us want a referendum on Europe. The People’s Pledge campaign is the best chance we will have of getting one.
A referendum is the only way of settling the question of our membership of Europe, one way or the other.