UK-Based Musicians’ Union Responds to Brexit

The Musicians’ Union, a UK-based organization comprised of more than 30,000 musicians, has responded to “Brexit,” Britain’s referendum in which a majority voted in favor of leaving the European Union. In a June 27 statement on the organization’s website, John Smith, the MU’s general secretary, outlines “serious concerns about what the future holds for our members.”

Read the entire statement below:


“We suspect that this will be very bad news for musicians. Over the years MU members have benefited from open borders, a protective copyright regime, and various directives which directly benefit them in their workplaces. We will no longer be able to jointly campaign with our former EU colleagues, nor will we be able to take part in the EU social dialogue committees on live performance and audio-visual. We must prepare for the introduction of border controls with the possibility of work permits and/or travel visas for musicians working in Europe. My initial reaction is one of profound depression. We will certainly have to be vigilant over the next crucial few months.

“We would like to reassure all MU members that we will continue to monitor this fast moving situation and that we will release further statements as information becomes available. It is important to remember that negotiations to leave the EU are going to be long and protracted and there should therefore be no immediate change in conditions or travel for musicians. We will ensure that we continue to represent our members’ interests every step of the way. If you have any immediate concerns, please get in touch.”