Engender joins forces with over 85 civil society organisations to express concerns about no-deal

Today Engender has joined forces with over 85 organisations from across the UK in expressing our shared and serious concerns about the impacts a no-deal Brexit will have on civil society. Collectively, we have called on the Prime Minister to urgently engage with civil society to address the risks that leaving the EU without a deal on the 31st October presents.[1]

Signatories of the letter have serious concerns that a no-deal exit will be a direct threat to the peace process in Northern Ireland, result in regression of rights and standards, uncertainty about the future, and about the lack of adequate engagement and support from the Government.

The impact of a no-deal Brexit on women in Scotland and throughout the rest of the UK would be significant. Our anti-discrimination and equality-enabling law and regulation is bound up in our membership of the European Union. Equal pay for equal work was one the founding principles of the European Union (EU), and it was a European Court of Justice decision that forced an unwilling UK Government to extend equal pay for work of equal value. Over the last 50 years, EU laws have been underpinned by the principles of equality and non-discrimination, promoting and protecting women’s rights in several areas.

The EU provided part-time workers with the right to challenge unfair dismissal, the right to redundancy pay, the right to paid holiday leave, as well as equal pay and maternity rights. The absence of the EU legal framework, coupled by the unclear direction of the UK on its review of domestic legislation post-Brexit, puts the future rights of women and girls in Scotland in a precarious position.

Alongside the other organisations who have signed the letter, we urge the Prime Minister to better engage with civil society across the four nations throughout the next stages of the Brexit process.



[1] The letter has been facilitated by the Brexit Civil Society Alliance, a UK wide alliance of charities, voluntary and campaigning organisations, with support from its sister Brexit Civil Society Projects in Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland. The Alliance does not take a position on what direction Brexit should take but seeks to raise concerns on behalf of its members and work to ensure that the Brexit process delivers on our three principles: open and accountable lawmaking; a high standards UK; and no governance gap after Brexit

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