Computer says no to Europeans in Britain
- More than 400,000 eligible citizens from European Economic Area countries and Switzerland have not yet applied for the U.K.’s EU Settlement Scheme, according to the U.K.’s Office for National Statistics.
- Organizations that help citizens with the process say vulnerable groups, such as older people, low-skilled workers, children and the homeless, may not have access to the digital registration system or may be unaware they need to register.
- Even among those who have secured settled status, concern remains that flaws in the system — in particular the lack of physical proof of their status — may mean bureaucratic headaches continue long after Brexit.
- Dimitri Scarlato, a Brexit consultant who helps people apply at the Italian Advice Centre in Islington, has seen how the system can work against the elderly. One of his clients, a 101-year-old Italian, was registered as a 1-year-old baby last month because the Home Office app “cannot scan passports of people whose age goes beyond two digits,” he said.