Councillors to vote on whether Town Hall should ‘wholeheartedly’ campaign for Remain

Camden Town Hall.

Camden Council is to vote on a motion tonight which would commit the Town Hall to “wholeheartedly” campaign for the UK to remain in the European Union.

The borough voted to formally declare its support for a second EU referendum with an option to remain back in November, in a motion brought by Cllr Luisa Porritt MEP (Lib Dem, Belsize) which attracted cross-party support.

Camden residents voted overwhelmingly (74.8 per cent) in favour of remaining in the EU back in 2016, with the constituency seat of Hampstead and Kilburn in particular the 13th most Remain-leaning area in the country.

The motion, brought by Cllr Peter Taheri (Lab, West Hampstead) and Cllr Leo Cassarani (Lab, Swiss Cottage), reads: “Camden’s values are internationalist and we unashamedly stand up for them. We believe in building an EU-wide progressive movement to take on our shared challenges like the climate crisis, preventing the rise of fascism and extremism, and ending austerity.

“We also believe that we need to work in the UK to tackle the inequalities that helped lead to Brexit and invest in our public services and communities.

“We believe that immigrants and free movement are being scapegoated by a right wing government as they continue to implement toxic austerity policies.

“This motion calls on the council to wholeheartedly back and campaign for the UK to remain in the European Union, and to fight against a disastrous “no deal” Brexit at every opportunity.

“This council believes that any withdrawal agreement must face a confirmatory public vote, with Remain on the ballot paper. We call on residents, community groups and our institutions to support us in this approach.”

November’s Liberal Democrat motion for the council to back a People’s Vote was voted through by Camden’s Labour majority, with deputy leader of Camden Conservatives Cllr Gio Spinella (Con, Frognal & Fitzjohns) also lending his support.

Next week’s motion will be heard at Camden’s full council meeting this evening.