UK and EU expats’ treatment is shameful history for Britain

Published:  12 Dec at 6 PM
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Tagged: UK, Citizenship, Euro, England
As the UK’s General Election gets underway, civil society activists are launching a manifesto for citizens’ rights to apply to EU expats living and working in the UK.

Named the Citizens’ Rights Manifesto for the 5 million, the document is calling for the new government to allow EU expats to be given UK rights in primary law via the issuance of an EU Green Card as proof of their status within the UK. Included are UK expats living, working and retiring in EU member states, all of whom should also be given a Green Card guaranteeing their right to free movement.

In addition, the manifesto includes offering British citizenship for free to EU expats, as well as demanding guarantees of EU citizens’ rights to vote in Britain’s local elections. Secretary-General of New Europeans Roger Casale told the media the treatment during the Brexit negotiations of both British expats in EU member states and EU expats in the UK represents a shameful episode in the UK’s history, adding the EU could also have made a situation affecting millions of lives far easier to resolve.

According to Home Office reports, some 2.4 million EU expats in the UK have applied for settled status, but only around 40 per cent of those applying have been provided with what’s known as ‘pre-settled status’. Of this 40 per cent, it’s believed that a good number were wrongly refused full settled status. A previous Home Office estimate that between five and 10 per cent of applicants would have problems understanding the process hasn’t helped those wanting and needing to stay in the UK.
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