By Michael Sercan Daventry
LONDON (AA) – Britain’s main opposition leader on Tuesday made an impassioned plea for voters to keep the country in the EU, saying Brexit would be a “bonfire” of workers’ rights.
Jeremy Corbyn said continued membership of the European Union was vital to defend the rights gained for employees across the U.K.
The Labour Party leader, who has been criticized for appearing to show only lukewarm support for Britain’s place in the 28-nation bloc, made the remarks at a joint appearance with labor union leaders and his entire shadow cabinet.
Voters in the U.K. go to the polls to deliver their verdict on British EU membership on June 23.
Corbyn said at the Trades Union Congress in London on Tuesday: “We want to defend the very many gains made by trade unions across Europe that have brought us better working conditions – longer holidays, less discrimination and maternity and paternity leave.
"We believe a leave vote will put many of those things seriously and immediately at risk.”
Labor unions and socialist parties across Europe needed to cooperate to ensure further rights are secured, he added.
Corbyn also said Brexit would threaten the country’s National Health Service, particularly the status of thousands of migrant workers in the organization.
He said: “The NHS could not afford to lose 52,000 dedicated professionals and still deliver the service we need. They [prominent pro-Brexit campaigners] should think about these things before they shoot their mouths off in the way that they do.”