In a vote last week, on 28th March, the Senedd formally refused consent for the UK Government’s Retained EU Law Bill.
The Senedd has aligned with the Scottish Parliament in voting to withhold consent for the Retained EU Law Bill. This means the Bill does not have the support of the Welsh or Scottish governments.
The vote in the Senedd was a Legislative Consent Motion. This is a vote which is held if the UK government wishes to legislate on a subject matter which is a devolved issue.
In a statement from the Senedd, Mick Antoniw, the Welsh Government’s Counsel General and Minister for the Constitution, said the proposed legislation threatens food standards, environmental protections, workers’ rights, and business and consumer certainty.
“Both the Senedd and the Scottish Parliament have both been clear,” said Antoniw, “that this is an unacceptable encroachment on the democratically established devolution settlement.”
As it stands, the Retained EU Law Bill impacts over nearly 4,000 pieces of legislation. If passed as it is, the Bill would abolish all EU laws and standards still applicable in the UK at the end of 2023. This is known as the ‘sunset clause’, and we don’t know if the government has the time to decide on the future of each law by then. The Bill is currently at report stage in the House of Lords as part of the scrutiny process.
“We welcome the vote in the Senedd to drop the Retained EU Law Bill,” said Campaign Manager, Richard Kilpatrick, “at the last General Election, no one voted to give ministers this level of power over the laws and standards that we all take for granted. This wasn’t in the Conservative Party’s manifesto.
“The Senedd voted to drop this disastrous Bill, as did Holyrood, because it recognises that this Brexit government is putting so much at risk with this bonfire bill. Brexit was not a vote to slash our working conditions, environmental regulations or our quality of life.
“We call on people to join tens of thousands of others, as well as two devolved governments and an alliance of sitting MPs and members of the House of Lords, by signing our petition for the UK government to drop this Bill.”
European Movement UK demands the government drop the Retained EU Law Bill and instead focus on protecting our rights. Sign the petition to Save our Standards here.