By Leon Bailey-Green
At our breakfast event in December we’ll be discussing how charities and campaign groups can avoid simply preaching to the converted.
Change Britain, widely seen as the successor to Vote Leave, the official Leave campaign, is positively embracing leave and remain voters alike, whilst Open Britain, formerly Britain Stronger In Europe, the official remain campaign, is preaching to nobody but the already converted.
As Change Britain moves the messaging on by campaigning to make Brexit work for everyone, Open Britain are still insistent on re-running the campaign by telling us the same things we heard in the lead up to referendum.
There is a petition on the Change Britain website to ensure EU nationals living in the UK can stay. There is general agreement, across those who voted leave and remain, to protect the rights of EU citizens who have settled in the UK, so it’s clear the organisation is keen to go beyond preaching to the converted with a petition which appeals to all.
Contrast that with Open Britain. They’re running a petition to keep the UK in the single market, even though they know that is akin to being in the European Union. It comes across as an attempt – a bad one at that – to keep us in the EU via the back door.
It would be unusual for the people behind Open Britain to give up their principles, as Drew said in our video discussion, but if they want support of Leave voters, as they say they do on the website, they ought to adapt their position following the result.
It’s clear that Change Britain is the only campaign truly seeking to embrace leave and remain voters alike.
Whilst Open Britain calls ‘brexiteers’ out for “colliding with economic reality” and talking of the ‘horrific damage of brexit’, Change Britain’s website makes no derogatory references or connotations to remain voters, instead choosing to focus on positive post-referendum news.
I urge you to look at the News sections of both campaign websites. No matter which side of the argument you’re on it’ll be clear which campaign is committed to embracing all voters, and which one is focused on divisive rhetoric.
Open Britain may have some genuine concerns about the government’s approach to Brexit, but why would I, as a Leave voter, listen to them when they talk about us in such a manner?
We’ll be talking about the dangers of campaign organisations existing in echo chambers at our next event in December; find out more about it here.