UK Referendum result: BTS position

Dear Colleague,

In light of the result in last Thursday’s referendum for the UK to leave the European Union (EU), I want to reassure you that the leadership of the British Toxicology Society (BTS) remains fully committed to supporting all our members, wherever they are based.

Scientists operate most effectively as a global community and BTS will continue to support international collaboration among toxicologists via EUROTOX, IUTOX and through the international evolution of safety testing and risk assessment guidelines and harmonised interpretation of safety data.

The membership of BTS is truly international with 10% of its full members residing in EU countries other than UK and a further 10% based in countries spread across the globe. The BTS has always been and will remain an active supporter of EUROTOX and one of the many benefits of membership of the BTS is access to travel Fellowships and Grants to support, among other things, attendance at meetings such as the EUROTOX annual congress

The UK Register of Toxicologists, which also has a diverse membership including many members from other countries within the EU and worldwide, will continue, with the backing of the BTS, to provide a route to European Registered Toxicologist status. Its ongoing partnership with EUROTOX colleagues in upholding standards for registration and raising the profile of toxicology within Europe and beyond will be maintained.

The BTS listens to its members and we are actively working to develop strategic initiatives which have clear support from the membership, such as enhancing the Educational and Training opportunities we provide and engaging more actively in Public Advocacy.

The BTS adheres to the principle that scientific endeavour, like the benefits that ensue, should transcend borders whether geographical or political. We recognise the value of collaborative science and will add our voice to press the UK government to ensure that overall funding for scientific research in the UK is not reduced as a result of the country leaving the EU.

If you have new ideas on how we can support our members or make a specific response to the planned UK exit from the EU please let us know your views.  You can do so by writing to me at

Best wishes,

Ernie Harpur
President of the BTS