Farry: Freedom of movement is particularly important to NI

Alliance Deputy Leader and Brexit Spokesperson Stephen Farry has said the UK Government is taking a step closer to causing enormous damage to the economy, with the announcement free movement of people will end in March 2019.

Stephen Farry said: “With this announcement, the UK Government is taking yet another step in causing enormous damage to the UK economy and society.

“Freedom of movement is particularly important to the functioning of Northern Ireland.

“While there are hopes and expectations that the Common Travel Area will be maintained, it remains unclear how achievable preserving all of it will be in practice. But freedom of movement is much bigger than a matter for British and Irish citizens. We are very dependent on EU Nationals in a wide range of aspects of life in this region.

“A Northern Ireland Executive is best placed to speak for Northern Ireland. Important decisions are being taken as part of these Brexit negotiations without a thought or concern raised for what it will mean for everyone here. We can’t rely on others to do the job we must stand up and do for ourselves.

“Alliance continues to make the case for a Special Deal for Northern Ireland. We see continued membership of the EU Single Market as essential, as well as adherence to the Four Fundamental Freedoms – the freedom of movement of workers, goods, services and capital – and adherence to the EU Customs Union and Common External Tariff as important for continued economic strength in region.”

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