Call for reassurances for borough's EU citizens
Merton Council declared the borough’s EU Referendum result in the early hours of Friday, following the first UK referendum on EU membership in just over 40 years.
Merton’s turnout for the referendum was 73.5%, that’s 100,207 people. The borough’s postal vote turnout was 87%.
The results for Merton were as follows:
Remain: 63,003 votes
Leave: 37,097 votes.
A total of 107 ballot papers were rejected. The results of the borough were announced by counting officer Ged Curran.
This means that Merton voted to Remain in the EU, like 27 other London boroughs. Lambeth recorded the highest percentage for Remain of 79%.
There were 2.2 million Remain votes compared to 1.5 million for Leave. Barking and Dagenham, Bexley, Sutton, Havering and Hillingdon were the only boroughs to support Brexit.
Turnout was around 2% lower in the capital than the rest of the UK, in part due to torrential rain and transport problems in the south-east on polling day.
The local vote was in contrast to the national result which saw 51.9% vote to Leave, and 48.1% to Remain.
Chairman of Merton Borough Liberal Democrats, Giles Bailey, afterwards called for assurances for Merton’s EU citizens. He said: “We are pleased and proud that Merton voted to stay in the EU by a clear margin.
“However, we have a number of concerns for the future. An immediate one is for our friends and neighbours who happen to be EU citizens living locally. We know from speaking with many in the area, that they are worried about their rights in the UK as we begin to negotiate leaving the EU.
"We call upon our local MPs and Merton Council to do what they can to press the Government to ensure that EU citizens settled here can continue to have an unfettered right to do so and to participate in our community, without needing work permits or visas; and that they and their families should be able to continue to use the NHS and other services freely.
"This is a time for unity - and that must include all our EU citizens who make such a big contribution to life locally, and the UK generally."
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June 24, 2016