EU Citizens living and working in Bournemouth, Christchurch and Poole are being encouraged to apply for settled status if they wish to stay on in the area after the UK’s exit from the EU.
Dorset is in the top ten for areas in the UK with the highest number of EU citizens living locally and contributing to the local economy, many in the health and social care sector and hospitality industry.
Graham Farrant, Chief Executive and Brexit Lead Officer for BCP Council, said: “We recognise and value the financial and cultural contribution that so many EU citizens bring to our local economy and would encourage them to apply for settled status to ensure they can stay on to live and work here.
“The EU Settlement Scheme makes it easy for residents and their family members to obtain UK immigration status. It’s free and they only need to complete three key steps - prove their identity, show that they live in the UK, and declare any criminal convictions.”
EU Citizens have until 31 December 2020 to apply for the right to stay. The application can be done online www.gov.uk/eu-settled-status
Anyone needing assistance with completing their application can get support from specialist help teams at the Citizens Advice Bureau in Bournemouth and Poole.
The Government has revealed that more than one million resident EEA and Swiss citizens have already been granted status under the EU Settlement Scheme out of 3.5 million thought to be in the UK.