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UK Labour Party brings back ID card concept to reduce irregular immigration

Brexit effects continue to ripple in France, Portugal
UK Labour Party brings back ID card concept to reduce irregular immigration

The shadow immigration minister Stephen Kinnock unveiled plans by a possible Labour government in the UK to introduce “basic” ID cards to reduce illegal immigration.

The new IDs would be mandatory and enable the government to count how many people there are in Britain.

The plan is reminiscent of a similar one first conceived by the Tony Blair administration roughly twenty years ago. It was eventually scrapped for the enormous amount of data it purported to collect.

To ease these concerns about civil liberties, Kinnock said In an interview with Times Radio that the new plan would limit the scale of data stored and that almost every EU member state had some identity scheme, so “it can’t be beyond the wit of man” to create one for Britain too.

Talking to the BBC Radio 4 Today programme (as quoted by The Guardian), Kinnock’s Labour colleague and shadow home secretary Yvette Cooper said the scheme would not be considered a solution to cracking down on working without permission in the UK.

Britons in France experience post-Brexit difficulties

Regulating immigration within the UK is not the only lingering effect of Brexit decisions. According to the campaign group Rift, Britons in France, children and young people in France regularly face problems due to a lack of proof of residency under the Brexit Withdrawal Agreement (WA).

The news reported by The Connexion said the problems stem from the fact that France, unlike other EU states, exempted under-18s from requiring a WA residency card.

Officials in France, however, are unfamiliar with these rules and often demand proof of residency status for jobs, study courses, grants, driving, or student accommodation, refusing access to services that should not require such evidence.

The group’s report on the subject and related issues have been brought to the attention of the British Embassy, the French government, and the European Commission.

Britons’ biometric ID cards ‘can only be processed in Lisbon’

The post-Brexit chaos has also spread to Portugal, where British residents living in Portugal were recently told by SEF (foreigners and borders agency) that they would have to travel to Lisbon for the collection of their biometric data to be issued an updated residency card.

Britons living in Albufeira, Aljezur, Tavira, Silves, Lagos and Portimão received the email from SEF over the past few weeks, according to the Portugal Resident. For some of them, the Lisbon office was 250km away.

It needs to be clarified at the time of writing why SEF is proceeding this way. Still, the agency has in the past been criticized for delays in issuing biometric ID cards to UK citizens resident in Portugal.

Biometric Update has reached out to SEF over the news events and will update this article should we receive a reply.

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