People are freaking out because parliament voted against protecting Erasmus
How will you get that 50-liker in front of the Eiffel Tower now?
People are freaking out after MPs voted against binding the government to keep the Erasmus arrangements the same as before Brexit.
A new clause of the Brexit bill, proposed by Lib Dem MP Layla Moran, would have made it an objective of the government to get an agreement which “enables the UK to participate in all elements of the Erasmus+ programme on existing terms.”
MPs have voted against New Clause 10 being read a second time, by 344 votes to 254.
This new clause would have required the Government to seek to negotiate continuing full membership of the EU’s Erasmus+ education and youth programme.
— UK House of Commons (@HouseofCommons) January 8, 2020
Speaking in parliament, Moran said the new clause “would only require the Government to seek—to do what they say they want to do, but let us be sure—to negotiate continuing full membership of the future Erasmus education and youth programme.” Despite Moran calling it a “no-brainer”, MPs rejected the clause.
Anyway, not clear it’s doom and gloom for Erasmus – the government could still negotiate to keep it on the same terms, or pretty similar to before. Non-EU countries like Macedonia, Norway, and Turkey take part in the exchange programme.
James Duddridge, a Brexit minister, told parliament that the government was basically going to try and do this anyway. “The political declaration envisages the possibility of UK participation in EU programmes, and we will negotiate the general terms of participation, where appropriate, throughout the implementation period,” he said.
The University of Bristol confirmed in November it would continue funding the Erasmus programme even if the government failed to secure a deal with the EU.
Nonetheless, people are freaking out.
Gutted to hear Erasmus will not continue in the UK — waving goodbye to an enriching, fascinating, and valuable cultural exchange which has benefitted so many people.
This fails to recognise that most students cannot afford these opportunities/experiences without financial help. https://t.co/zqw7LNXY5n
— Jack Edwards (@jackbenedwards) January 9, 2020
I gained so much from my Erasmus year – it was one of the best experiences and I learnt so much. Devastating to think the next generation of young people in our country won’t have access to the same opportunity. https://t.co/U1e0baMFav
— Luciana Berger (@lucianaberger) January 9, 2020
Sorry young people, students who wanted to spend time in EU27, travel and learn. Your government has now removed that choice. Your stuck on the island.
Heartbreaking that one of new government’s first steps is to vote down requirement to negotiate membership of Erasmus. 😢 https://t.co/YoLw4zkmSN
— Caroline Voaden MEP 🔶 (@CarolineVoaden) January 9, 2020
The British Council, who look after Erasmus, didn’t respond to our request for comment.