Migrants' Rights Network

Protect EU citizens’ residence rights – open letter

Migrants’ rights groups have issued an open letter calling for the rights of EU citizens in the UK to be protected.

The letter, which was published by the London Evening Standard, says:

“We welcome the UK Government’s newfound willingness to enter into dialogue with organisations representing Europeans in the UK and UK citizens in the EU.

“It is now essential that the UK Government’s proposal is amended to end the fear and confusion over their futures still faced by EU citizens who have built lives in the UK.

“The EU’s current proposal supports the principle of maintaining the status of all UK citizens in the EU after Britain’s withdrawal from the EU with all their existing rights and entitlements intact.

“That means full and permanent protection of the rights of EU citizens in the UK and their family members, so people can continue to live normally after Brexit. That guarantee should be maintained by the Court of Justice.

“And clarity should be offered immediately on what will be required in the new “settled status” application process, alongside an automatic transfer to the new status for anyone who already holds permanent residency. The process should be transparent, accessible and designed in consultation with prospective applicants.

“Any significant change to application processes, including for third country nationals, should be subject to review. And the Government, to protect jobs and stability, should not pursue any proposal to set the cut-off point for the new offer before the UK exits the EU.

“These commitments need to be enshrined in a new international agreement ring-fenced from the rest of the Brexit negotiations, so that all have clarity even in the event of a no-deal Brexit.”


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