EU nationals living in Gillingham and other parts of North Dorset are being urged to regularise their residency status in the UK before the cut-off date of 30 June amid a warning that ‘time is running out’ for them.
There are fears that some EU nationals in the area do not realise they need to get their application in by the end of the month. If not, they risk being here ‘illegally’ say support workers.
The plea has been issued by EU Settlement Scheme (EUSS) advisers working at Dorset Race Equality Council and Citizens Advice.
EUSS and Community Development Officer Christine Brienne told Gillingham News: ‘Following Brexit, EU nationals who are eligible must get their residency status in order to continue to live and work in the UK by applying to the EU Settlement Scheme (EUSS).
‘The deadline for applying is approaching fast as it must be done before 30 June 2021.’
She continued: ‘We currently have quite a number of EU nationals calling us for help with their last minute application, many from Weymouth and Bournemouth-Christchurch-Poole, but only a few from the north of the county.
‘We are concerned that some people may fall through the net, particularly those who think they do not need to apply because they have been living in the UK for a long time or they already have a resident’s card – they still need to apply – or their passport is out of date and it is difficult to renew it at their embassy because of Covid restrictions. This also applies to their non-British family members and children even if they are born in the UK.’
Christine Brienne added: ‘We are keen to reach all those who have not applied yet as they risk becoming illegal after the end of June. We can also help anyone who has queries about their current status.
‘Our support is free but time is truly running out.’
For further details about EUSS support, please contact on 07743 370459 or visit www.dorsetrec.org.uk