Authored article

We will create a fairer society: article by Theresa May

Writing in The Sun, the Prime Minister explains how the government's plan for exiting the EU fits into her wider plan for a better Britain.

Prime Minister Theresa May speaking about the government's 12 principles for Brexit negotiations

Last year, the country took a momentous decision. People voted in their millions to leave the European Union and embrace a brighter future for Britain.

This is the year we start to make it happen.

That is why, earlier this week, I set out the government’s 12 negotiating objectives for Brexit, so that everyone has the clarity they need about our direction of travel as we prepare to trigger Article 50 before the end of March.

But those 12 objectives are just part of my Plan for Britain. Because last summer’s referendum was not just a vote to leave the European Union. It was a vote to change the way our whole country works.

A vote to build a stronger, fairer Britain that works for everyone, not just the privileged few. A Britain – and a Brexit – that works for ordinary working people.

The plan I have set out this week will build that better Britain.

We will make Britain stronger by taking back control of our own laws. So the rules that govern your life will be made in Britain not in Brussels.

We will strengthen the precious union between the 4 nations of our United Kingdom. And we will work to maintain the Common Travel Area with the Republic of Ireland.

We will make Britain fairer for ordinary working people by getting control of the numbers coming here from the European Union.

We will continue to attract the brightest and best to work or study here and we will always welcome individual migrants as friends. But by leaving the single market and ending freedom of movement, this process will be managed properly.

So we will be the ones to decide who gets to come here and when.

We will make this a Brexit that works for ordinary working people by ensuring that every worker enjoys the rights and protections they deserve. Indeed, under my leadership, not only will the government protect the rights of workers. We will build on them. And we will guarantee the rights of EU citizens living here, and the rights of British nationals in other member states, as soon as we can.

We will also use this moment of national change to build a truly Global Britain, reaching out to old friends and new allies alike.

We will build a new trading relationship with our partners in Europe, but we will also be free to do new trade deals with countries from outside the EU too. And we will continue to co-operate with our friends and allies in Europe in critical areas such as science and technology and the fight against crime and terrorism.

Taken together, this will amount to a new and equal partnership between an independent, self-governing, Global Britain and our friends and allies in the EU.

But this whole approach to Brexit is just one part of my wider plan to shape the country we want to be when we have left the EU.

So we will use this moment of change to build a stronger economy and a fairer society that works for ordinary working people by embracing genuine economic and social reform here at home.

Our Modern Industrial Strategy, which we will publish next week, will lay the foundations to build a more prosperous and more equal Britain.

We will spread wealth and opportunity across every community. And we will help young people to develop the skills they need to do the high-paid, high-skilled jobs of the future.

We will create a fairer society by breaking down the barriers of privilege and making Britain a great meritocracy where success is defined by work and talent, not birth or circumstance. This will include going further in reforming our schools and ensuring that every child has the opportunity to thrive in a post-Brexit Britain.

And we will build a more united nation by forging a shared society and putting the values of responsibility, fairness and citizenship at the heart of everything we do.

This is a bold, ambitious plan to deliver the change we need. It is about the ends not the means – delivering the change that people voted for, by making this a country that works for everyone, not just a privileged few.

But making this a reality will depend on another essential ingredient of our success as a nation. The strength and support of 65 million people willing us to make it happen.

So as Sun readers I urge you to support this plan and to help us bring our country back together.

This is a time to stop fighting the battles of the past and look to the future.

Published 19 January 2017