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United Kingdom, Countdown to Records in Settlement Scheme: Appeal Submitted by Comites and Consulate

Countdown to close registrations in the settlement scheme, which is the British government system that allows all Europeans to continue to live, work and study in the UK by obtaining a relatives’ permit, which must be requested by 30 June. As of December 31, 2020, the latest survey published by the Ministry of the Interior, 4,916,280 EU citizens present in the country have applied, 97% of whom have obtained a residence permit, that is, 4,514,250 of whom 472,300 are Italians. “However, there is still a small but significant percentage of those who have not yet applied, which is of great concern: those over 65 – reading a note from the Comites -. According to the data processed by the Home Office, 2% are Only of the total applicants fall into this age group, which equates to 111130 European Seniors who are currently in the UK A number too low to ensure that all eligible have applied for it. The risk is that at the end of the last day of application, we mention at 30 Next June, tens of thousands of elderly find themselves in an irregular situation in the eyes of the British government, despite the fact that many of them have been living here for decades. In this regard, the Comites of London, the Committee of Italians Abroad, together with the Consulate General of Italy in London, have launched a series of outreach activities specifically targeting Italians over the age of 65 and residing in the United Kingdom. “ The problem is actually purely cultural – notes the Comitis -: for many of them, it would be inappropriate for them to apply for a residence permit in a country they had previously issued to them in the past a permit to stay indefinitely, which is a testimony, as he has repeatedly explained, The Home Office, is not valid for purposes of right to stay in the post-Brexit period. Others still believe that marrying a British partner may be sufficient, which is also irrelevant for the purpose of issuing the permit if dual citizenship is not obtained Italian and British in the meantime. ”

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According to data in the possession of the Consulate General of Italy in London, there are more than 41,000 Italians over the age of 65 registered with AIRE, and these days the two bodies, the commission and the consulate, are paying the utmost attention to their invitation to register. In the settlement scheme no later than June 30. The activity, implemented in January, was developed by mailing 41,000 letters to all over the age of 65 asking them to clarify their position towards the Ministry of Interior by applying for settlement status. In recent days, an informational campaign has also been launched on the web and on social networks with personalized infographics aiming to raise awareness among family members most accustomed to technology inviting their older relatives to apply. Effective Wednesday April 21, the “Settlement Status” counter at the Consulate General in London has reopened: a tool that allows citizens without digital literacy to register for free in the procedure introduced by the UK immigration authorities. This initiative is made possible thanks to the availability of Comites of London, “The New European” and all sponsors located in the region (ACLI, INAS, INCA CGIL and ITAL UIL) who will provide specialized personnel in the Consulate General building at Harp House 83-86 Farringdon Street, EC4A 4BL. The office will be open weekly (Wednesdays 2 pm-5pm), but frequency may vary based on needs emerging from the community.

Consul General Marco Villani said: “The Italians have responded very positively to the British government’s call to register for the settlement scheme and the confirmation comes from more than 470,000 citizens who have obtained the permit so far – as Consul General Marco Villani said – but we must not leave anyone. Behind. The reason, together with Comites, we launched a series of initiatives to raise awareness among the elderly population, assisting them in every way to obtain information and to present. The deadline has approached and these last few weeks are necessary to avoid the risk of many citizens finding themselves in an irregular situation. “It is important to register in the settlement scheme because we must be able to prove to all the authorities of the country that we have the right to live here” – added Pietro Molly, President of Comites London – “Among the rights we have can continue to be imposed there, for example. For example, registration with a GP, as well as free medical care and medication, but if we do not make our position clear in the eyes of the British government, even if we have lived here for decades, the risk is that after 30 June we may lose these and many other rights. It is necessary for everyone to apply, especially if they fall into the category of over 65 years and who, according to the data of the Ministry of the Interior, seem to be the least interested in this legal obligation. “

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