A £300,000 fund has been launched for UK embassies across Europe – on top of a recently-announced £3 million package of support to UK nationals – to explain any actions hard-to-reach Brits may need to take in order to be fully ready ahead of Brexit on 31 October. This will include events where people can speak directly to our Ambassadors, town hall information meetings including question and answer sessions with consular experts, a radio advertising campaign, and advice stands at airports across the EU.
There are more than 1 million UK nationals living in the EU, with more than 60% living in just 4 countries – Spain, France, Germany and the Netherlands. The Foreign & Commonwealth Office (FCO) is running an information campaign to encourage UK nationals to take essential action on: residency, healthcare, passports and driving licences. The £300,000 fund will be used to support those who are vulnerable, elderly or living in remote areas to ensure that all Brits have access to all the information they need to get ready for Brexit.
The Minister for Europe Chris Pincher said:
Protecting the rights of UK nationals is an absolute priority and we are stepping up our engagement across Europe including with hard-to-reach British nationals. We have already launched a £3 million UK Nationals Fund and our Embassies in Europe have been doing vital work for months to provide advice to UK nationals and this funding will further boost those efforts.
UK nationals living in EU and EFTA countries are being encouraged to visit the Living In Guides at gov.uk/Brexit for specific information on the actions they need to take to continue living and accessing services in their host country, such as:
- apply for residency
- register for healthcare
- check the validity of your passport
- exchange your driving licence for a local one
The new funding announced today is in addition to a £3 million UK Nationals Support Fund announced by the Foreign Secretary last week to help inform and support UK nationals to complete residency applications and other paperwork.
British embassies have been providing advice about changes to UK nationals’ rights, such as residency and healthcare, at events, online and in the media.