Erasmus+ petition of 40,000 signatures delivered to Downing Street

Published on February 27, 2024

On Friday, the European Movement in partnership with the Young European Movement headed to Downing Street to deliver our Embrace Erasmus+ petition which now has over 40,000 signatures.  

Since the launch of this campaign academics, politicians, and youth organisations across the UK have supported this cause. From Sadiq Khan and Caroline Lucas to The British Youth Council and European Youth Forum.  

As well as this external support, members of local EMUK groups and coordinators at the Young European Movement have taken to the streets in Cambridge, Oxford, and across London and have organised a selection of action days on university campuses. This has helped raise awareness around the campaign while simultaneously educating young people on the implications of being excluded from Erasmus+.  

Over 200 supporters have ordered Erasmus+ leaflets to distribute in cafes, schools, libraries and supermarkets across every corner of the UK – because Erasmus+ doesn’t just impact university students but youth clubs, secondary schools and apprenticeship programmes.  

This campaign and the support it has garnered demonstrates that we won’t let the government keep on ignoring the issue of Erasmus+ - and the devastating loss of opportunities for young people since we left the programme.  

Art O’Mahony, Coordinator for the Young European Movement said:  

“Handing in the Embrace Erasmus+ petition at Downing Street is a powerful statement of our movement's commitment to the future of young people across the UK and Europe. It symbolizes our belief, along with the belief of over 40,000 others in the transformative impact of Erasmus+ and the imperative to ensure its continuation for generations to come”.  

Sadiq Khan, Mayor of London, said: 

“We have seen the damage done by the Government’s hard Brexit right across our city, including to our world-class educational institutions with students from across Europe no longer able choose London to study abroad and vice versa. That’s why I’m supporting the campaign to re-join the Erasmus+ programme.” 

Sir Vince Cable, former Leader of the Liberal Democrats, said: 

"During the vote in 2016, everyone I spoke to wanted to save Erasmus+, because not even the most ardent-Eurosceptic can argue that the UK being excluded from the Erasmus programme is a good thing. Our students lose out, our universities lose out and we as a nation are all the poorer for it.” 

Caroline Lucas, Green Party MP, said: 

"It’s especially cruel that the young people who will pay the highest price for Brexit have had this brilliant opportunity stolen from them. Erasmus is no political threat. Not even the most strident Brexiter could keep a straight face and depict it as an attack on parliamentary sovereignty or blame it for the failures that were routinely laid at the door of the EU.” 

Thank you to everyone who has shown support for this campaign so far. In the coming weeks, we will keep on building the pressure. So, keep an eye on the European Movement to find out how to get involved with the next stage of the campaign. 

If you haven’t signed the Embrace Erasmus+ petition you still have time to sign here.

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