In 2019 a secret report code-named ‘Yellowhammer’ was commissioned by the Government. to help with contingency-planning based on the assumptions of a worse-case impact of a no-deal Brexit. The report was leaked later that year and warned that Brexit could cause problems for:
Peace – creating a hard Irish border, unrest and smuggling
Order – lead to community tension and public disorder
Ports – a reduced ‘flow rate’ and delays at the border
Energy – fewer providers, less choice and higher prices
Fishing rights – disputes over access to fishing grounds
Health – shortages of staff, medicines and equipment
Social care – staff shortages, higher costs and provider failures
Travel – delays and long queues at UK borders
Food – less choice and fresh food, prices rises and panic buying
Pets – shortages of vets, medicines and no ‘pet passports’.
Most of this sounds very familiar. It seems that the warnings of the report were ignored by the Government intent on Brexit whatever the cost.
These issues were not only downplayed by the Government which insisted that we could ‘have our cake and eat it’, but omitted entirely from Johnson’s ‘Get Brexit Done’ 2019 General Election.
We were deceived.
Less than three years on, we can all recognise these issues are an accurate reflection of what we, as a country, are now facing. It’s clear that Brexit has been a disaster for individuals and businesses. Can we all just accept that Brexit has been a national catastrophe and begin the path to rejoining the EU? This way we can start to mitigate some of these disasters.