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Debates
Wednesday, 15 January 2020 - Strasbourg Provisional edition

Implementing and monitoring the provisions on citizens’ rights in the Withdrawal Agreement (B9-0031/2020)
MPphoto
 

  Judith Bunting (Renew). – Madam President, it saddened me today in Parliament that we’ve had to pass a resolution to ensure the rights of the many EU citizens in the UK and of British citizens living abroad. Whilst I welcome that we passed this resolution, these rights should never have been put at risk by the British Government because of Brexit.

The very first thing that Theresa May should ever have done was to guarantee the rights of European citizens living in Britain. It would have been a strong negotiating position and taken away years of unnecessary stress and uncertainty. Now, we have a shoddy scheme, which depends on a PDF as a proof of settlement status, rather than any physical document or card. A PDF, we all know, can be doctored easily, so employers and landlords are, justifiably perhaps, concerned about forgery, which, once again, will lead to unfair discrimination. I hope that the British Government will listen to people’s worries about this, as well as concerns passed in the resolution today.

But British citizens are also worrying about their right to stay in European countries where they have made their homes. I would like to thank those Member States who are already offering generous terms of settlement to those UK citizens who have taken residence in their country. I urge those states who have not yet declared their intentions to do so and to make their decisions known in good time.

 
Last updated: 31 January 2020Legal notice