Farry calls for right to remain reassurances

Alliance Party Economy spokesperson Stephen Farry MLA has called on the First Minister and deputy First Minister to follow the lead of others by making the right for EU nationals to remain here a priority in Brexit negotiations.

North Down MLA Mr Farry said two weeks on from the EU referendum vote, the Executive had yet to state what the key interests for Northern Ireland would be in any forthcoming negotiations, with major economic, financial and political issues to be dealt with.

“No-one would realistically expect any answers at this stage, but the most immediate issue where people, businesses and other institutions are looking for reassurances is the right of EU nationals to stay in the UK. We are hearing these concerns and the need for reassurance on a regular basis.

“Many rely on their contribution for their continued success. Indeed, many EU nationals have now made Northern Ireland their home and dug deep roots into the community.

“We have seen the leading contender for the next Prime Minister failing to give such assurances, although by contrast the Scottish First Minister and Liberal Democrats have called for guarantees.

“There is not only an opportunity but an obligation for Northern Ireland’s joint leaders to make clear the right to remain will be a major priority in any forthcoming negotiations. It would provide some confidence in the short-term to those people who are feeling vulnerable, and to businesses and other institutions which would be affected.”

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