Tomorrow, the UK will leave the European Union. Three and a half years after the 2016 Referendum, when 17.4 million people across the country and a majority of the Vale of Glamorgan constituency instructed the Government to leave the EU, it will finally happen.
It’s been a frustrating process. Some MPs did all they could to block the democratic vote and dragged the issue out far longer than it should have been. It required a General Election last month to break the deadlock – in which communities like Barry helped Boris gain his mandate and majority to get Brexit over the line.
Last week, the Withdrawal Agreement cleared both Houses and was signed off by the Prime Minister, marking our exit on 31 January 2020.
Finally, we’re Getting Brexit Done!
This means that we can get on with delivering on other priorities to move our country forward and start taking advantage of the new opportunities we have as an independent nation – demonstrated by the wording on the commemorative 50p coin ‘Peace, Prosperity and Friendship with all Nations’ which emphasises our international approach.
We’ve already made a start on other priorities.
It’s vital that we do all we can to keep our communities safe and we’ve delivered extra funding to support police services. I’m delighted that the Vale will benefit from a £21.1 million increase to the South Wales Police budget and the recruitment of extra officers.
We’ve also introduced a new Veterans Railcard to honour the service they have given to our country, keeping us safe. There is a strong Armed Forces community across the Vale, the new Railcard will support a number of veterans living locally.
These are just two examples of the work we are doing in Government, along with more money for education and health – which will result in more money for Wales to spend in these areas. It’s important that the Welsh Government uses this additional funding effectively and I’ll be making the case for the Vale to receive our fair share.