Chorus of condemnation at Johnson’s attack on democracy

Crop boris protest

A protest against the proguing of parliament.

Campaigners have called the prime minister's actions a coup

Graham Martin's photo

30th August 2019 by Graham Martin 1 Comment

Boris Johnson’s controversial suspension of parliament is an assault on democracy and civil society.

That’s the view of charity leaders who have slammed the prime minister’s decision to prorogue Westminster.

Johnson says he needs the time to bring forward new policy proposals – but it has been widely seen as a means of forcing through a no deal Brexit.

It has also caused a storm of protest, with campaigners calling it a coup, a petition gaining more than 1,600,000 signatures as TFN published this story and a series od demonstrations planned for Saturday (31 August) - click link or see below for more details.

Civil society groups joined in the chorus of condemnation, backing a statement saying that the Tory government’s actions “shrink democratic and civic space”.

The statement – read it in full here – is signed by the chief executives of 17 civil society groups, including Friends of the Earth and the Sheila McKechnie Foundation.

It states: “For a number of years, civil society organisations have expressed concern that some politicians are seeking to restrict the democratic role of the social sector and that such restrictions demonstrate a shrinking of civic space.

“The prime minister’s decision to suspend parliament for more than four weeks in the lead up to one of the most important national decisions in recent history shrinks the democratic and civic space even further.

“And, in addition proroguing parliament means risking ending the passage of a number of bills that could deliver important change for the people and causes that civil society works on behalf of.”

The third sector has been gripped by a sense of alarm over the prospect of a no deal Brexit being pushed through.

A recent letter from Anne Fowlie, chief executive of the Scottish Council for Voluntary Organisations, warned that a no deal Brexit would cause charities to collapse and leave a "vacuum of support" in local communities.

Meanwhile, as reported by TFN this week, 85 organisations have penned a joint letter to Johnson about the impacts of leaving the European Union without a deal.

A stop the coup - defend democracy demonstration will be held in George Square, Glasgow, on Saturday, 31 August from 2pm till 5pm.

30th August 2019 by lok Yue

The anti-brexit politicians have had three years to do something. And haven't. Likewise the Third sector has had three years to prepare for Brexit. Long enough for those charities to wean themselves off European funding, one might suggest.