Taking back control? The impact of Brexit on the immigration of third country nationals and asylum seekers

8931595340_478ef13163_o.jpgNatascha Zaun, Assistant Professor at LSE, reflects upon the situation for third country nationals, especially asylum seekers, wishing to come to the UK whilst it is part of the EU. Focusing on policies such as the Dublin Regulation, she asks how the situation could change after Brexit, and argues that the UK has more control over third country migration than Brexit campaigners imply. 

The Brexit campaign, and especially UKIP’s breaking point poster, suggested that the European Union did not control the immigration of third country nationals (i.e. non-EU citizens) and that this resulted in uncontrolled immigration into the UK. According to Eurosceptics, voting for Brexit would hence help the UK ‘take back control’, not only of the migration of EU citizens, but of third country nationals as well.

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Brexit and the Future of Family Reunion Rights

Screenshot 2018-03-22 10.45.44A new draft for the withdrawal agreement published by the Brexit negotiators on 19 March presents its part on citizens’ rights, as ‘agreed at negotiators’ level’. Polly Polak explores how this would change current rights to family reunion, for EU citizens living in the UK and for UK citizens living elsewhere in the EU.

The number of EU citizens living in the UK and UK nationals living in other Member States is hard to gage, but it is generally estimated that there are approximately 3.7 million EU citizens living in the UK, and 1.3 million people born in the UK living in other EU countries. These citizens and their families will be directly affected by Brexit for the simple reason that their right to reside in their host states currently stems from EU law, and will no longer apply after Brexit. Continue reading

On the Frontline: Brexit as Bereavement

33669694505_fffb3fb4c5_oIn this article originally written for Discover Society, Verena K. Brändle, Charlotte Galpin, and Hans-Jörg Trenz explore pro-European mobilisation in the UK as an emotional counter-reaction to populist discourse during Brexit and its claim of a unitary representation of the sovereign ‘will of the people’.

Since the referendum in June 2016, a new phenomenon of bottom-up, self-organized pro-EU mobilisation has appeared in the UK. In the days following the referendum new initiatives and groups emerged to represent the voices of the ‘48%’ who voted to remain in the EU. Instead of relying on established party structures and media, anti-Brexiters self-organise on social media. New Facebook pages or Twitter campaigns are used to reach out but also to network between local and regional pro-EU groups and to organise campaign activities such as street stalls, family days, public meetings, and rallies. In coordination on a regional and national level, these groups have organised a number of large anti-Brexit marches in London and other cities around the UK.

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Why Britain’s public finances will suffer if Brexit reduces migration

20271175720_875bb8c005_zIan Preston, Professor of Economics at UCL, notes that Brexit will likely lead to reduced migration. As migrants tend to be of working-age, this could result in a smaller proportion of the population comprising the labour-force, which could have a negative impact on UK tax receipts and public finances more broadly. 

Brexit will have high fiscal costs and a large part of that will be a consequence of what happens to migration numbers. That was the conclusion widely drawn from the Office for Budget Responsibility’s most recent Economic and Fiscal Outlook published in late November – the first since June’s referendum vote. It was illuminated further by supplementary analysis published on December 8.

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Migration Watch distort UCL research

planeSam Ashworth-Hayes, journalist at InFacts, highlights how a recent report by Migration Watch misrepresents research findings from UCL academics on the fiscal effects of immigration to the UK by EEA citizens.

Given the focus the Leave campaign is putting on immigration, it is unsurprising that a report from Migration Watch purporting to show that immigrants from the European Economic Area* (EEA) are a drain on the public purse has grabbed the imagination of the eurosceptic press.

In a paper it says “extends” research from University College London, the anti-immigration pressure group says the Treasury spent more in 2014/15 on public services for recent EEA immigrants than they paid in taxes. The original research found that EEA immigrants in the UK paid made a positive contribution of more than £4 billion between 1995 and 2011. Continue reading