Leeds ,

Information and advice on Brexit

Arrangements surrounding Brexit and how and when the UK will be leaving the EU are ongoing and are being managed by the government.

There is some uncertainty around whether local services might be affected, so here we’ve tried to answer some of the most common questions and concerns.

This page will be updated as negotiations and timescales progress.

1.What are the timescales/when will we be leaving?

The original scheduling based on a deal being agreed meant we were due to leave the EU on March 29, 2019. This would have been followed by a transition period until the end of December 2020, extendable until December 2022 had both sides agreed.  Leaving without a deal means no transition period.

Clearly timetables will now have to be revised in the light of whatever Parliament decides is the way forward.

The council will be continuing to engage with our partners and communities throughout the process to give advice and support where we can.

More information about the process and timescales can be found at www.gov.uk/brexit

2. Will a no deal Brexit cause major traffic problems on local motorways?

We’re seeking more advice and guidance from the government on this, but any impact on the transport network will depend on the terms of how we leave the EU.

Work is currently going on across the region to minimise the impact of any disruption at ports and airports and we’ll know more in the coming months.

In the meantime, we’d advise checking www.gov.uk/brexit for further updates.

3. Will a no deal Brexit mean food shortages?

The guidance we’ve had from the government is that they don’t expect there to be general shortages of food. There is a possibility that availability of some specific brands might be limited in the short term but we’ll know more once we have more clarity on the terms on which we’ll be leaving the EU.

4. Will it be harder for me to get medicine if there’s a no deal Brexit?

NHS England and local health trust have plans in place to ensure they have appropriate stocks of medication in the event of a no deal Brexit.

If you are concerned about your specific medication, we’d recommend contacting your GP for any further advice or visit https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/medicines-information/getting-your-medicines-if-theres-no-deal-eu-exit/

5. Will basic council services in Leeds like bin collections be disrupted if there’s a no deal Brexit?

We’ve got robust but flexible plans in place to ensure that there shouldn’t be any disruption to day-to-day services like bin collections in the event of a no deal Brexit and we’re confident it will be business as usual for the council and other local services.

We’ll have more details about anything we might have to adapt to once we know the terms which we’ll be leaving the EU on. We’ll be sure to keep residents and partners fully informed as and when we’re able to give more details.

6. Will there be protests over the coming weeks?

We know people on both sides of the debate are very passionate and we always give people in Leeds the opportunity to make their voices heard.

As with any public protests or demonstrations, we work alongside the police and organisers to ensure these events can take place safely.

We also have a strong and ongoing commitment to community engagement and reassurance and our hope would always be that, as in the past, the city will work together.

7. What will the city do in the event of a second referendum, general election or European elections?

Currently European Union Pariamentary elections are due to take place on May 23.  The Electoral Commission and government have instructed local authorities to plan for these elections as if they are to take place, with the proviso that they may be cancelled should an EU exit deal be agreed before then. Our elections team are making the necessary arrangements.

Decisions over whether any further votes or elections take place will also be made at national level.  Should this happen our elections team will be prepared to react and further information would be shared with the public as soon as we were made aware.

Our elections pages can be viewed here https://www.leeds.gov.uk/your-council/elections and will shortly be updated with EU elections information.

8. I’m an EU citizen. What should I do if I want to remain in the UK?

If you want to remain in the UK after Brexit then you’ll need to apply to the EU Citizens Settlement Scheme by 30 June 2021, or by 31 December 2020 if the UK leaves the EU without a deal.

You will be eligible for settlement if you have started living in the UK before the end of the transition period if the UK leaves with a deal. If there is no deal, you will need to have started living in the UK before ‘exit day’ – 29 March 2019.

Irish citizens do not need to apply.

You can find more details on the gov.uk website at www.gov.uk/euexit

9. What are you doing to ensure Leeds takes advantage of the opportunities Brexit will provide?

No matter how we leave the EU, Leeds will remain an attractive city for investment and tourism and we’re committed to making the most of that.

As always, we’ll continue to promote the city as an exciting and vibrant place to live, work and visit and we’re excited about opportunities to enhance our already impressive global reputation.

We’ll be working alongside partners and the business community to identify specific opportunities over the coming months.

You can find more information about Brexit from some of our partners at:

Government, including EU resettlement: www.gov.uk/brexit or www.gov.uk/euexit

University of Leeds: https://www.leeds.ac.uk/forstaff/homepage/390/brexit

Leeds Beckett University: https://www.leedsbeckett.ac.uk/international-students/europe/brexit/