Lib Dems fight to guarantee EU citizens’ rights in law

Liberal Democrat MPs have today voted on the Party's amendment to the Withdrawal Agreement Bill to protect the rights of EU citizens living in the UK after Brexit.

The amendment (New Clause 34) would have given EU citizens the right to appeal if the Home Office refused them Settled Status under the Conservative Government’s scheme, but was blocked by Conservative MPs by 343 votes to 251 votes.


Liberal Democrat MPs also tabled amendments that would:

• Remove the Conservative Government’s arbitrary December 2020 deadline for Settled Status applications (Amendment 27).

• Require the Government to provide EU citizens with physical proof of their Settled Status, rather than just a digital code (New Clause 33).

However, there was no opportunity for MPs to vote on these amendments.

Following the vote, Liberal Democrat Home Affairs spokesperson Christine Jardine said:

“By voting against this amendment today, Boris Johnson has yet again turned his back on people who have contributed to our economy, paid their tax and made a life here for their families.

“What happened to his promise to guarantee EU citizens' rights automatically in law?

“Johnson is leading us towards an even bigger Windrush-style scandal. Thousands of EU citizens will be left effectively undocumented from next year, at risk of detention and deportation.

“EU citizens are our friends and our families, our neighbours and our carers. Liberal Democrats will continue to fight for them.”

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