This afternoon [21st January] Prime Minister Theresa May announced the hugely controversial Settled Status fee for EU citizens will be scrapped, following a successful campaign by the SNP.
Recently, Ruth Maguire MSP for Cunninghame South, wrote to EU citizens in her constituency regarding the UK government’s controversial Settled Status Scheme.
The MSP took the opportunity to condemn the scheme that planned to charge EU citizens a £65 administration fee for their right to continued residence in the UK. Applications for children were planned to incur a charge of £32.50.
Last month in the Scottish Parliament, all parties except the Tories backed calls for the UK government to drop the fee.
The Scottish Government had committed to paying the fees for all public sector workers in Scotland.
“The Scottish Government have also funded Scotland’s Citizens Advice network to provide a new advice service to European citizens in Scotland affected by changes to immigration rules as a result of Brexit. This service is set to go live at the beginning of March 2019.
Applications to the Settlement Scheme will open fully on the 30th March 2019 with the deadline to apply set for 30th June 2021.
Commenting, SNP MSP Ruth Maguire said:
“EU nationals in Cunninghame South should never have been asked to pay this fee in order to remain in their own homes and maintain the rights they already have.
“Thanks to the SNP’s persistence on this issue, I’m glad the UK government has finally seen sense and dropped these appalling plans.
“This is a major U-turn from a beleaguered Prime Minister, who is desperately trying to cling onto power. But this entire sorry process underlines precisely why Scotland needs the powers to create a fairer immigration system.
“EU citizens will always remain welcome in Ayrshire and across Scotland – they are valued members of all of our communities, our friends, neighbours and colleagues.”