Due to Brexit, EU citizens must apply for the EU Settlement Scheme if they want to continue living in the UK after June 2021. Even if they have lived in the UK most of their lives.
EU nationals who have lived continuously in the UK for five years or more should be entitled to settled status, meaning they are free to go on living in the UK indefinitely.
There have been over 36,000 applications from Bristol to the scheme so far, but only 520 of these – just 1% – have been from citizens aged 65 or over.
The Council is concerned that this group are not aware of the scheme or do not know that they need to apply. We want and need to make sure their rights continue to be protected after Brexit.
The deadline to apply to the scheme is 30 June 2021.
Employers can continue to confirm an EEA national’s right to work using only their passport or national ID card until 30 June 2021. From 1 July 2021, employers will no longer be able to accept an EEA or Swiss passport alone as evidence of a permanent right to work in the UK for new employees. Employers will need to see proof of immigration status which will be either under the EU Settlement Scheme or the new immigration system. Providers will also need to update recruitment policies.
Read more about the scheme and how to apply, including instructions in other languages, on the Council’s dedicated website: bristol.gov.uk/EUsettlement
People can get help from:
St Pauls Advice Centre, 146 Grosvenor Road, BS2 8YA
firstname.lastname@example.org – 01179 9552981
North Bristol Advice Centre, 2 Gainsborough Square, BS7 9XA
email@example.com – 01179 851122
South Bristol Advice Services, Withywood Centre, Queens Road, BS13 8QA
firstname.lastname@example.org – 01179 851122
Recently, The Forum was asked to deliver a session on the potential impact of Brexit (especially a ‘no deal’ one) on Disabled people to University of Bristol students undertaking a masters degree in Disability Studies. Students were shocked to realise just how many problems Disabled people may face, and amazed that it hasn’t been mentioned in any of the news coverage.
Some of these potential impacts could affect everyone but would create much more of a difficulty for Disabled people, they include:
- Shortage of some medicines – medicines which, if you are on them long term, you you need to stop taking gradually;
- Additional costs of import tax on already expensive disability-related equipment,
- A shortage of future Personal Assistants and care support workers that is likely to result if the free movement of European workers stops.
If you would like to find out more about how Disabled people could be affected in the case of a Brexit No Deal, Disability Rights UK have some great resources on their website.
A Disabled people’s organisation has warned that the proposals for who can stay in the UK after Brexit completely ignores Disabled people and their family carers.
Disire — the Disabled people’s organisation (DPO) of Disabled UK residents from other countries — made the following statement about the recent EU-UK Joint Report :
“For Disabled EU citizens and carers, the EU-UK deal is a disappointment. Not all Disabled people are able to work, or work enough, and so they sometimes do not meet the criteria for permanent residence. Carers of Disabled people, who care for their (often British) relatives also cannot apply for a permanent residence card because the Home Office does not consider them to be “working”.
“The newly proposed settled status is still based on the criteria of exercising the EU treaty rights. (This means) People who want to apply must show they have worked, have been self-employed, have studied or have been self-sufficient for five years.
“Disire believes that Disabled people and carers play a vital role in Britain and should not be prevented from getting permanent residence or settled status. Theresa May has promised not to split up families. Disabled people have families too. Disabled people and carers must not be left behind when developing a new status for EU citizens.
“Disire is disappointed that the EU-UK deal does not mention of Disabled people and carers or other suppressed groups who cannot and will not fulfil the criteria for the proposed settled status.
“We ask the European Union negotiators and the UK government to urgently ensure that any new arrangements regarding the right to stay in the UK for EEA citizens does not discriminate against Disabled people, their families and carers.
“Any new arrangements and rights must have Disabled people and their families in mind. That means any new status, rights or arrangements need to have provisions for Disabled people who cannot fulfil the requirements due to their impairment, illness or condition.
“If necessary, people with carers’ duties must also have provisions made for them if these duties prevent them from meeting the requirements. These provisions are important to meet the legal requirements of the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, the UK Equality Act 2010 and other laws.”
(Disire, December 2017)