Wefan Gymraeg

24,320 EU nationals are stuck in legal limbo

All EU citizens in the Wales need to be given the right to remain.

By Welsh Liberal Democrats, May 21, 2020 12:05

The union flag flying next to the EU flag.

We've have reiterated their calls for EU citizens to be given the automatic right to stay in the UK, as new official figures show over 24,000 in Wales have not been given the right to remain.

Of the 57,140 EU nationals in Wales who have applied for permanent residency, only 32,370 have been granted settled status.

5,560 EU nationals in Wales have applied but are still waiting for a final decision to be made, while 18,670 have been given only temporary Pre-Settled Status - meaning they will have to reapply within five years or be forced to leave the UK.

Although the Home Office has announced a one-year visa extensions for certain health and care staff, the Liberal Democrats have secured cross-party support for their campaign to give all health and social care workers on the frontline of this crisis indefinite leave to remain.

Leader of the Welsh Liberal Democrats Jane Dodds said:

“These figures are frankly shocking, the fact that over 24,000 people do not have a guaranteed right to remain in the UK is shameful. With the uncertainty of Brexit and Coronavirus continuing, it’s unacceptable to leave so many families in legal limbo. 

"Anyone who has chosen to come and make their life here in Wales should be given the right to remain, just as we want UK citizens living abroad to be given right to remain where they are. It's clear the current scheme is not providing that guarantee.

"The Welsh Liberal Democrats will continue to stand up for EU citizens by fighting to guarantee their rights to live and work in the UK. We're calling on the Home Office to change it's policy and give all EU Citizens in the UK the right to remain indefiintely."

Liberal Democrat Home Affairs Spokesperson Christine Jardine MP added:

“The coronavirus crisis is an unprecedented threat. NHS staff, social care workers and other health professionals are putting themselves in harm’s way each and every day to keep us safe.
“The Government has a chance to show its own support for the people’s heroes by extending the right to remain to all EU and foreign nationals, many of whom are fighting for our lives during the Covid-19 pandemic."

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