Vulnerable EU citizens to be offered settlement help

The Home Office has announced grant funding of up to £9 million to support EU citizens who might need additional help when applying for their immigration status through the EU Settlement Scheme.

The Home Office has been working closely with voluntary and community organisations across the UK representing the needs of potentially vulnerable EU citizens.

The grant will help these organisations to both inform vulnerable individuals about the need to apply for settled status and support them to complete their applications to protect their status as the UK exits the EU.

Immigration Minister Caroline Nokes said: “EU citizens are our neighbours, our friends and our family and we want them to stay. It is essential that those who are more vulnerable and require support are able to access the help that they need.

“This funding and our work with the voluntary and community sector will help ensure that every EU citizen who is eligible to stay has their status protected.”

Organisations working with people who might be affected and require additional support can apply for project funding from the end of November.

“It is encouraging that the government has recognised and actively drawn on the local voluntary sector’s expertise in working with the most marginalised and disadvantaged members of our communities in planning for this crucially important programme of work,” said Jane Ide, Chief Executive at the National Association for Voluntary and Community Action.

“We look forward to continuing to work with the Home Office to ensure that the local voluntary sector is given all the tools and resources it needs to effectively enable every EU citizen in this country, no matter how vulnerable, to access the support they need at this time of enormous change.”

Earlier this month, the Home Office announced the next phase of the rollout of the EU Settlement Scheme. From 1st November to 21st December the private test phase will be extended to include vulnerable people with additional support needs with the involvement of a small number of local authorities and community organisations.

The scheme will be fully open by March 2019.

Article published 26th October 2018