Protecting EU Citizens in the UK from a Brexit ‘Windrush on Steroids’: A Legislative Proposal for a Declaratory Registration System
DCU Brexit Institute – Working Paper N. 8 - 2019
30 Pages Posted: 9 Aug 2019
Date Written: August 6, 2019
Three years after the Brexit referendum, the more than 3 million EU citizens residing in the UK still have no clarity what their legal status will be after Brexit. It is uncertain whether the Withdrawal Agreement will ever be adopted, while national measures adopted by the UK Government do not provide proper protection. The ‘EU Settlement Scheme’ has been adopted through secondary legis-lation, which can be easily changed over time, thus providing limited security. Moreover, the Scheme introduces an application system which will turn legally residing EU citizens into illegal immigrants if they do not apply successfully by the deadline, leading to scenario’s similar to those seen with the Windrush scandal.
It is high time that the UK legislator takes appropriate action. This paper presents a full legislative proposal to turn the EU Settlement Scheme into a declaratory registration scheme that will ensure that EU citizens receive a document proving their status, while avoiding turning them into illegal immigrants. It equally provides a proposal to define the rights of these citizens into primary legisla-tion so they cannot be easily undermined.
Keywords: Brexit EU Citizenship Residency UK Legislation Proposal
JEL Classification: K33
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation