Together raises concerns about EU Settlement Scheme for children in contact with justice system

Date: 16th September 2019
Category: Family Environment and Alternative Care, Access to appropriate information, Children in conflict with the law


The briefing, issued jointly with members of the UK Children and Brexit coalition, outlines the implications of EU Settlement Scheme (EUSS) policy and guidance for EU-national children who have been in contact with the criminal justice system. 

It outlines several issues related to current UK Government policy, including the lack of clarity on how these vulnerable children can apply for the EUSS, how a child’s offending behaviour could affect whether they are granted settled status under the scheme and whether they will be subject to the same criteria as adults.

The briefing calls on the UK Government, through the EU Settlement Scheme, to:

  • grant children settled status regardless of their criminal history
  • introduce guidance for children and young people applying for settled status
  • ensure that a custodial sentence imposed on a child does not impact on the calculation of their continuous residence
  • introduce guidance on conducting best interests assessments in decision-making
  • collect centralised nationality data for children in youth justice services and detention

Emphasising the over-representation of looked after children in the criminal justice system, the briefing was prepared for the Westminster Hall debate on the EU Settlement Scheme and looked after children that took place on 3rd September 2019.