Below is the text of the press release issued by Britain Stronger In Europe on 21 June 2016.
I am proud to represent a number of different & very inspiring organisations, but on this issue, I speak from the heart and only for myself.
I also so respect the right for people to have varying views: that’s a key part of democracy. But the EU Referendum is an issue that really matters & this is why I believe it is important to be open.
This referendum has been hard to watch at times but, at heart, this is what I feel: I have travelled all over the world and have noticed, so often, how many of the most vulnerable people look to the UK for character and leadership, as if we are like beacons of good manners and fortitude. Our country’s values and contribution are respected across Europe and beyond; the UK is a trusted friend to so many nations. Those things can get lost in the maze of headlines.
At such a time for the UK to retreat, run and cut ourselves loose from Europe, when there are so many challenges on our doorstep, to me just doesn’t feel either courageous or kind. Europe has many flaws, but I also believe the way to help resolve many of those tough issues is from within. History has taught us that together we achieve more. I guess I believe that to help make the future of the world a better place then that future has to be about partnership.
As a taxi driver said to me in Paris recently, we really need you, the UK. Don’t desert us when times are tough, stand with us like you always have.
That rang true.
I have never been a good quitter and I am so proud of the UK and our values: tolerance, kindness, respect, courage and resilience. This is why I want us to stay together and Remain in Europe.