Dear Leavers

Dear Leavers,

Have you any idea how much heartache and headaches your vote and the Brexiteers’ subsequent handling of this vote have caused nationwide and on a European scale?

Call me a whinger (some of you seem to like that word so much, almost as much as remoaner), but if you were in our position, would you perhaps think twice? If we are not saved by the proverbial bell, we Europeans will from next Friday (in just over a week’s time) no longer have the right to stay in our homes, our jobs, use the NHS or have a bank account.

We will be illegals, subject to May’s reassuringly named Hostile Environment policies …..even though many of us have worked here for decades, as your doctors and nurses, fruit pickers, keeping your restaurants and charities going….and even though many of us were born here. We have all made our lives here, not because we were scroungers or “queue jumpers“, but because this was a welcoming country full of opportunities and lovely people, because we fell in love here and settled, which has been our right (agreed by your government) for decades. We have done nothing wrong, we have not robbed you of your school places, houses and jobs.

Your government has done that.

And conveniently shifted the blame onto us and onto the EU: Even though we have provenly brought money into the country. WE have paid our taxes, unlike the billionaire Brexiteers who hoard their dosh away in tax havens or indeed Euro accounts, to avoid having to pay their fair shares. ……..

It is an enormous tragedy for us that you have chosen to believe them. They will not suffer the consequences of this catastrophic decision to leave, if it is enacted. But we all will. 140 -170,000 jobs are at stake in a no deal Brexit, with the livelihoods of entire families sometimes hanging on one job. Many more people will be thrown into poverty and become dependent on food banks.

For us Europeans the crisis is existential at the most basic level: can you imagine what it feels like to be made to apply for the right to stay in your own home?

That your application may well be refused ?

That you may not be allowed to stay in a home for which you have worked hard for decades?

Please try that for a second. And don’t forget: your British friends and families who have chosen to live , love and work in another European country are by return in the same situation. That means a total of 5 million people feeling deeply unsettled and threatened right now.

What can we tell our children and grandchildren?

Are there any among you who might re-consider whether this can possibly be good and right?

Gerlinda Rehberg

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