THE LAST MILE CITIZENS' LOBBY - POLITICAL BRIEFING FOR MPs
Note to Members of Parliament only: please click here if you want to sign the pledge.
We are nearing the end of the negotiations on the UK leaving the EU, and the3million, British in Europe, and UNISON are very concerned about whether the existing rights of 5 million EU citizens in the UK and British citizens in the EU will be safeguarded after March 2019 if there is no deal.
The UK government and the EU must do the right thing for these 5 million citizens – which should have been done a long time ago - and make sure that they honour the political promises made to us at the start of the negotiations, no matter what.
Unilateral guarantees are not enough - these 5 million people need the UK government and the EU to commit now to implementing the citizens’ rights provisions of the Withdrawal Agreement under Article 50, whatever the outcome of the negotiations.
In September, the3million and British in Europe wrote to the Prime Minister and Secretary of State Dominic Raab asking them to end the extreme legal uncertainty for citizens on either side of the Brexit divide in case of a no-deal scenario.
Today, we are inviting you to meet your European constituents in Parliament on Monday 5 November, 1pm-4pm in Committee Rooms 10 & 12 and to show your support to EU citizens in the UK and British citizens in the EU.
Although the UK government has promised to guarantee our rights unilaterally, this is insufficient protection: unilateral promises do nothing to address the situation of British citizens in the EU27 countries, and some issues such as pension entitlements or recognition of qualifications require an international agreement.
Furthermore, national legislation to enable citizens to remain in their country of residence would not be backed by an international treaty and would therefore be vulnerable to change in the future, leaving the possibility of another Windrush scandal for EU citizens in the UK and British citizens in the 27 EU member states.
In the event of no-deal, these issues can only be addressed by implementing the citizens’ rights provisions of the Withdrawal Agreement through a separate treaty adopted under Article 50, signed in time to come into effect by 29th March 2019. We hope you are available to meet your constituents in Parliament on 5 November, and that we can count on your support.
Nicolas Hatton, the3million
Jane Golding, British in Europe
SOME FURTHER INFORMATION FOR MPs:
We hope you are available to meet your constituents in Parliament on 5 November, and that we can count on your support. EU citizens urgently need the case for a joint agreement on citizens' rights to be made in Parliament - below is more information about what could happen to citizens in case of no deal:
Our briefing on what a "no deal" Brexit will mean for EU citizens
Our joint letter with British in Europe urging the UK government and the EU to make a joint commitment now on citizens' rights
Our longer analysis of where the EU/UK negotiations are on citizens' rights and what needs to happen now
For the detailed legal explanation of how a stand-alone agreement can happen, see this article on ringfencing by Professor Stijn Smismans.
During that event, we will asking you to sign the #thelastmile citizens' lobby pledge:
“I support honouring under Article 50, as a minimum, the agreement already reached on citizens’ rights - whatever the outcome on Brexit”.
MEMBER OF PARLIAMENT - HOW TO SUPPORT THE LAST MILE CITIZENS' LOBBY?
Tweet a picture of yourself with the pledge to @the3million and @BritishinEurope, with the hashtag #thelastmile
Set up meetings with your constituents who contacted you in Committee room 10 & 12 between 1pm and 4pm on Monday 5 November
Press the Prime Minister and the Secretary of State for Exiting the EU to agree to ring-fence our rights under Article 50, whatever the outcome of the negotiations on Brexit