Hundreds of EU nationals refused permission to stay in Shropshire

Hundreds of EU nationals have been refused permission to stay in Shropshire after Brexit, figures reveal.

Figures have revealed that while thousands of EU citizens have been granted the right to stay in Shropshire, hundreds have not.
Figures have revealed that while thousands of EU citizens have been granted the right to stay in Shropshire, hundreds have not.

Home Office data published for the first time, shows around 560 people who applied to continue living in the area by September 30 had their application rejected – 190 in the Shropshire Council area and 370 in the Telford & Wrekin catchment.

According to the figures another 50 people had applications turned down in Powys.

The figures do mean that thousands of people have been granted the right to stay

The EU Settlement scheme launched in March 2019 to regulate the immigration status of European citizens who live in the UK.

Those who have lived in the UK for five years, and meet the criteria, can receive settled status and remain in the country indefinitely.

Others who have lived in the country for less time can receive pre-settled status, which allows them to remain for a further five years. They can later apply for settled status.

According to the data, 15,110 people applied to continue living in Telford and Wrekin, with 14,200 receiving a conclusion by the end of September.

Of those 7,080 people received settled status and 6,310 pre-settled.

For Shropshire, 9,590 people applied to continue living in the country, with 4,900 receiving settled status and 3,780 pre-settled status

For Powys, 1,670 people were given settled status and 880 pre-settled status.

However, the3Million, which campaigns for EU citizens' rights, is concerned about the status of those who are left "in limbo" waiting for their appeals to be concluded.

Monique Hawkins, policy and research officer at the3million, said many people had lost their job or rental opportunity while waiting for application and appeal outcomes.

She said: "Many people report not being able to get through to helplines, and find it next to impossible to get progress updates on their applications.

"For those who have been refused, the administrative review and appeals process face their own lengthy delays.

"We are extremely concerned about the length of time it is taking to unite people with their lawful status, and thereby their rights to continue living and working in the UK."

Though the scheme officially closed on June 30, EU citizens with limited reasonable grounds for missing the deadline can still apply to secure their rights.

Around 400 applications were submitted after the deadline in Telford and Wrekin, 200 in Shropshire and 60 in Powys.

The Home Office said people with a pending application, are protected while the outcome of their application is unknown.

A spokeswoman said the EU Settlement Scheme has been an "overwhelming success", with 6.3 million applications received and 5.5 million people being granted permission to stay so far.

She added: “Caseworkers will always look for reasons to grant rather than refuse.

"Individuals can be refused on eligibility or criminality grounds, and if a refused applicant disagrees with our decision, they can apply for an administrative review or appeal.

“We have published non-exhaustive guidance on reasonable grounds for making a late EUSS application and take a flexible and pragmatic approach to considering them, and we’ve made millions of pounds available in funding for organisations to support vulnerable applicants.”

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