“Brexit – as challenging as that is, I hope that our members of Parliament, individuals in positions of decision-making will continue to value and uphold the strength and the positiveness that comes together when you have people working together.”
“At this very crucial point in time we hold that responsibility to try and safeguard the younger generation, the potential leaders who will tomorrow in our absence create a better world.”
Here is the full speech of Lori Gatsi-Barnet , Zimbabwean Global Citizen & Entrepreneur on “Brexit and My Hope for the Future.”
“Mind the Brexit Gap: Celebrating Diversity and Inclusion in the Border,” A Philippine Independence Day Event, Cavan Crystal Hotel, June 1, 2019
Good Afternoon. I appreciate having you sitting for quite a long time. Thank you Vanda for having us here and everyone who is here. Mabuhay to the Filipino Community here from Belfast. My name is Lori Gatsi-Barnet and I am fortunate to live in Northern Ireland for fourteen years now, and alongside that I truly understand the power of diversity and what it does at its very core. Having lived and worked in several countries around the world, I understand that diversity is a very crucial part in making our society be what it needs to be. As we look at what Brexit is going to bring about, Brexit unfortunately brings a lot of questions, a lot of uncertainty, a lot of instability. And I think it looks into dividing I suppose the strength that there is in diversity. As challenging as that is, I hope that our members of Parliament, individuals in positions of decision-making will continue to value and uphold the strength and the positiveness that comes together when you have people working together.
My hope for the future: As many of us who stood up here we’ve mentioned that we are parents, we have families, we have dreams, we have goals and we have visions. And as a Non-EU migrant, nobody understands that journey well, that when you leave what is home to you, you appreciate that the journey from then on to succeed, to achieve, and to accomplish all those things, becomes an absolute challenge. Brexit forms that challenge, and to a non-EU migrant I think we are very well adapted to challenge and change, and the adversity that that brings. I look at what Brexit potentially can do, but on the other side, we have to be positive about that change. Brexit is a challenge, and I think to all of us in this room, we appreciate that it comes in various forms. The world has become a global village so essentially we all need to work together with different economies, establishing different things and working outside what we have known to be the EU. The merger of minds is crucial because we will need to work together in a different way for us to achieve different things in different contexts because Brexit might in part bring about the negative things that will tend to put apart the positiveness that we have all been accustomed to. The unity, the friendships, the partnerships, and all of the things that we do together.
Opportunities as well for young people. They are the future. And at this very crucial point in time we hold that responsibility to try and safeguard the potential leaders who will tomorrow in our absence create a better world. My challenge this afternoon is for all leaders and for all those in positions of power, when you consider what Brexit can do, please do not take away the possibility for the young generation that is up and coming. They need the opportunity to see the world. They need the opportunity to see what diversity can do. They need to be out there inspired and motivated, to be the best they can be. To be, as we are in this room, diverse. It doesn’t matter whether you’re from Poland, you’re from Lithuania, you’re from Zimbabwe, you’re from South Africa. You can be from anywhere in the world. And the world is the place for us to work together.
So Brexit, in whatever form it comes, we will do everything we can to make sure that diversity still has a place. Thank you.