Government must act to protect science from Brexit- Prospect tells Commons committee

Government must act to protect science from Brexit- Prospect tells Commons committee

The government must take steps to protect UK science from the adverse effects of Brexit, Prospect has told the House of Commons Science and Technology committee in a submission to an inquiry into how leaving the EU will impact the science sector.

Brexit flags

Prospect represents around 50,000 workers in STEM-related professions and has been consistently advocating the closest possible science collaboration in the future, including continued free movement for scientists, full participation in EU science programmes, and membership of key agencies such as Euratom.

Drawing on the expertise of Prospect members across the country, the submission highlights the numerous challenges that leaving the EU will pose for the science sector in the UK, and the risks involved in cutting the UK off from the benefits of collaboration such as access to skills, facilities and funding streams.

Most urgently, Prospect urge that reassurance must be given to the thousands of EU scientists, science students, and their families living in the UK that they will continue to be able to live and work here after Brexit and that their rights will not be diminished.

Following the submission Prospect senior deputy general secretary Sue Ferns has been invited to attend a Brexit, science and innovation summit with key politicians and others where she will make the case for close science collaboration after Brexit.

Sue Ferns said: “It is clear from what our members have told us that science is a fundamentally international and collaborative enterprise, cutting ourselves off from funding, facilities and skills can only damage the science sector.

“But more importantly, scientists are people with lives and families who need certainty about the future.

“The government must listen to the voices of UK scientists, drop its ideological Brexit red lines, and commit to maintaining the closest possible collaboration with the EU in the future.”

Prospect’s submission can be found here: