Call for child exemption from post-Brexit fees.
Children of EU citizens residing in the UK should be exempt from paying any registration costs after the Brexit negotiations conclude, External Affairs Secretary Fiona Hyslop said.
The Scottish Government is calling for the UK Government to commit to not impose post-Brexit registration fees for the 35,000 children of EU families under the age of 16 currently living in Scotland.
Speaking ahead of the ‘World Congress on Migration, Ethnicity, Race and Health’ in Edinburgh, Ms Hyslop said:
“Scotland has always been an outward looking nation, embracing the world beyond our borders. That spirit continues today: Scots voted overwhelmingly to remain in the EU and they will continue to welcome people to live, work and study in our country.
“We believe the current UK Government’s hostile immigration policy and unrealistic migration targets are hindering Scotland’s economic growth and our wider wellbeing.
“We want the UK Government to commit to not impose any fee in relation to the settled status process. Failing that, we ask at least for an exemption for all children living in the UK – many who were born here, consider themselves Scots and may be legally entitled to British citizenship. Concerns about costs will be an issue for many families and the UK Government should act now.
“As set out in our recently published paper, we believe Scotland should be granted devolved powers on migration, which would allow us to improve the rights of the migrants – and their families – living here, while benefiting our country’s economy and demography.
“We urge the new Home Secretary to act to make the system more humane and recognise the benefits of migration in Scotland and across the UK. I look forward to discussing these matters with Mr Javid in the near future.”
- Of the 219,000 EU citizens currently in Scotland, approximately 35,000 or around one in six (16.1%), are aged 0-16.
- The Scottish Government has published a discussion paper on Scotland’s Population Needs & Migration Policy.