Look at the situation in Northern France where thousands of refugees from many different countries are camped out waiting to try and find a way to get across the English Channel to start a new life in the United Kingdom.
Rightly, the UK needs to protect its borders and control who enters the country.
EU citizens have the right to enter the UK under 'free movement' rules within the EU area.
As a result of a recent court ruling the UK government was forced to allow anyone holding an EU Residency Card the right to also enter the UK. This includes Non-EU citizens who have a EU spouse or family member.
During 2014, the UK decided to grant completely FREE access into the UK for citizens from United Arab Emirates, Oman and Qatar. Which means citizens from these countries can enter the UK with a simple Electronic Visa Waiver (EVW) document. This allows them to visit the UK for up to six months without a Visa.
An Electronic Visa Waiver is very simple to complete, free of charge and quicker than applying for a visa. There is no requirement to provide biometrics, attend a visa application centre or hand in passports prior to travel. The document is issued immediately via a secure web site and can be obtained online from anywhere in the world for travel to the UK. Travellers from these countries must only complete their EVW on-line at least 48 hours before departure and present a printed copy on departure and again on arrival in the UK.
WHY HAS THE UK PROVIDED THIS SERVICE? Maybe some would claim it's due to the huge number of rich Arabs buying property in London and becoming the 'big spenders'.
But an even bigger question needs to be asked: ''Why has this same service not been offered to BRITISH citizens and their families?'' i.e British nationals who are married to Non-EU nationals. Thousands of British people are working and living in many countries around the world on short term and long term employment contracts. Some have their own successful businesses. Many are former members of the British Armed Forces. However, every time they wish to return to the UK, on a short or long term visit, they MUST obtain a visa for their spouse to enter the UK legally.
The spouse of a British citizen must provide full biometric details to a Visa Application Centre, complete an application form, provide full details of WHY they are traveling to the UK and full details about their British spouse and many other requirements together with a FEE for this so called privilege. Any visa granted after this long process will only be for six months. After six months the whole process has to be started again from the beginning.
Should the same British citizen together his or her spouse decide to visit another EU country they will automatically be granted a visa for FREE under the EU freedom of movement rules. Even though the British citizen is not actually living in an EU (He or she may be living in Asia, America or China or a Non-EU European country), the Non-EU spouse will be granted a visa under EU rules. This is due to the pure fact that the British national is also an EU passport holder.
No wonder then, that thousands of British people around the world find it difficult to understand why their own country discriminates against them and their spouse/family each time they want to return to the UK for a holiday or family visit to see relatives. Returning home for a permanent stay is another case, which will also be met with a nightmare of paperwork and procedures and FEES.
The time has come to stop all this discrimination against British citizens. The British public are not aware that this is going on. The time has come to make them aware and to campaign for changes in UK immigration rules.
I ask you to support the recent campaign that many of my British friends and I have recently launched to help bring about these changes. 'FREE Entry for British Citizens and Their Families' is a campaign that needs support from the British public.
PLEASE visit and sign and share our petition here