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Your update from Catherine 32

Dear Reader,

Were you in Brighton for our Autumn conference?  What a hugely successful event it was and it is always lovely to be surrounded by like minded friends! It was a very busy few days for me, with so many people wanting to talk about what Brexit meant for them and their organisations.
However, since returning to Brussels from Summer Recess, I have noticed a slight change in tone – yes we still have many supportive friends across Europe who are just as distressed as us with the outcome of the referendum - but there is also a swelling feeling 'Brexit means Brexit' and the UK needs to jolly well hurry up and get on with doing something about it!



The Battle for the Witney By-election

Many of you will have heard by now that my friend, Liz Leffman, has been selected as Witney’s candidate in the upcoming by-election on October 20th. Congratulations Liz! This is a really key by election for the Lib Dems.  Not only do we have a reputation to maintain in 'doing' by elections very well, but we need to demonstrate that we are still a serious political party with valid policies and the energy to get them implemented.  Since the General Election last year, the pundits have more or less written the Lib Dems off, but this is the chance to show them we are still around, so if you have some spare time to help please find out how by clicking on the following button.


Taking Wildlife Crime to the Top

As many of you may already know, I am a very keen wildlife enthusiast. In the 1970s I spent years studying hyenas and bush babies in Africa.  Preserving wild areas and the wildlife they support is one of the main drivers for getting me into European politics.



Changes to my Team

Since the referendum, I've had some changes in my team in the UK.  As my constituency organiser, Ben, moved to another post in his home town of Bristol, and given I need to spend more time with the Parliamentary team in London working on Brexit, I have shut the Oxford office.  Read more below to see who is doing what and how you can contact them.




Welcome to my new section – each month I’ll be looking at one or two aspects of the Brexit negotiations and shedding some light on them.

This month, since Teresa May only seems to have managed to go as far as brainstorming the Brexit process, I thought I’d let you know of a Lib Dem campaign that’s been set up.

We’re fighting to Save Erasmus. The party has backed a motion calling on the Government to make a clear commitment to protecting the student exchange scheme, which has benefited over 200,000 UK students and apprentices since it was set up in 1987. Around 100,000 more young people in the UK were expected to go on Erasmus from now until 2020, benefiting from EU-funded grants to cover tuition, training, travel and living costs.

Almost 10,000 people have backed a petition to save Erasmus that will be delivered to Downing Street and European leaders.

This is an example of the smaller more niche campaigns the party will be running throughout the negotiation process – if you have any more ideas please do get in touch.



Catherine Bearder MEP

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