Grüetzi (Swiss German)

This week all leading parties in the four parts of the UK have a woman at the helm.  Mary Lou McDonald (Sinn Fein) and Arlene Foster (DUP) for Northern Ireland, Leanne Wood (Plaid Cymru) for Wales, Nicola Sturgeon (SNP) for Scotland, and everyone's favourite, TM (Tories) for England/UK.  Despite our misgivings about at least one of these, it is still a nice thing to have in the year representing a hundred years since a woman was first allowed to vote here.

A clarification on the the permission to appeal point mentioned in the last newsletter.   This was only in relation to 'extended family members', and not 'family members'. 

Now, onto what the withdrawal agreement means for Surinder Singhers and more Brexit joy.

Withdrawal Agreement

The first phase of the withdrawal agreement between EU and UK, came to a conclusion in November 2017.  If Brexit goes ahead, and this deal is honoured, it means UK agreed on the treatment of EU citizens and their family who are in the in the UK. 

There is less certainty for the family members of British citizens in the UK who have exercised free movement rights in another member state, before moving to the UK though. 

Currently such family members are excluded from the agreement, although we are told by the Home Office that there is a "planned settlement strategy" for such individuals, which they will announce in due course. 

You can read the communications on this subject which have been shared with us by affected families, on our website.

Trade deals in jeopardy

Finally, some honesty and realism from Theresa May's government, with her ministers admitting that almost sixty five existing trade deals with non-EU countries are now at risk because of Brexit

This is in stark contrast to promises made by Liam Fox and other Leave campaigners who indicated that as soon as we had voted to leave, we'd have other trade agreements lined up straight away.  In fact, it's far from it.

Reports suggest countries like and  India may be open to trade agreements for more - wait for it - relaxed immigration rules, or even free movement! 

Wonder how Brexiteers will feel about such a deal, though if it does go ahead at least it will give them other migrants, albeit not EU citizens, to blame traffic, queues, heck, maybe even the weather on!


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