Today the government announced that they intend to suspend (prorogue) parliament from some point between 10-14 September until 14 October. This appears to be in order to prevent Parliament from stopping the UK from leaving the EU. Thangam Debbonaire, MP for Bristol West, has issued the following statement:

It is outrageous that the Prime Minister is attempting to shut the people’s elected representatives out of the process of leaving the European Union. It is particularly outrageous as he appears to be doing this in order to take the country out of the European Union with no agreement on the future relationship whatsoever. This is hugely damaging to jobs in the South West, damaging for the environment and very worrying for anyone living in the UK who is a citizen of one of the other 27 EU countries. It is vital for people likely to be affected by sudden changes in immigration status, or by changes to rules on customs and trading, to get advice about their status. I have written a blog about how you can do this.

Leaving the European Union at all is damaging to the UK. It is damaging for us to leave without any agreement. This will affect many aspects of people’s lives and jobs: from the movement of aeroplane parts between different parts of the EU, to small businesses selling goods and services to customers in other EU countries, to the regulation of pollution, the rights people have at work, the ability of citizens of the rest of the EU to continue to live and work in the UK with certainty, leaving with no agreement could risk all of this. The effects on the people of Bristol and businesses would be hugely damaging.

In common with the overwhelming majority of the people of Bristol West, I am opposed to us leaving the EU in any case and will continue to put forward the positive case for us continuing to have the closest possible relationship with the EU.

It’s for these reasons that last week I signed the petition to recall Parliament and this week I signed the Church House Declaration. In so doing, I pledged to continue to work with MPs from all parties to try to stop the Prime Minister from suspending Parliament and to prevent us from leaving the EU with no agreement. We will be returning to Parliament on Tuesday 3rd September, and I will do everything possible to represent the views and wishes of the people of Bristol West and work with anyone who can help achieve the UK retain the closest possible relationship with the European Union.

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