Six million requests to stay in the UK after Brexit

Heathrow airport

The settlement program aims to guarantee EU citizens who lived in Britain before the end of 2020 the same rights as before Brexit.

(Photo: dpa)

London More than six million people from the EU want to stay in Britain after Brexit. At the end of the deadline on June 30, 6.02 million EU citizens applied for the so-called settlement program, as announced by the British Home Office on Friday evening.

The program aims to guarantee EU citizens who lived in Britain before the end of 2020 the same rights as before Brexit, such as the right to live and work in the country, but also access to the healthcare system and social services.

According to the Interior Ministry, 5.45 million applications have been processed so far, more than 95 percent of which have been accepted. This also means that there is currently a large backlog of cases where many still have to wait for their future status to be clarified. Shortly before the deadline, there was another flood of people submitting applications at the last minute.

However, civil rights organizations fear that hundreds of thousands have missed the deadline and are now staying in the country illegally out of ignorance. The main concern is the elderly, the sick or the homeless. Some of these people are not even aware that they have to apply for a new status, or have problems with the digital application process, warns The3Million organization.

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