Shropshire and Cheshire operator Morris Care is helping its EU workforce live and work in the UK following Brexit as part of a Home Office pilot scheme for healthcare professionals.
The family run business arranged a series of workshops to assist staff to apply for their settlement or pre-settlement status in the UK. The care provider also covered the costs of visa applications.
Chief Operating Officer Sue Austin said: “We value all our staff within Morris Care who are integral to us providing high quality and compassionate care for both the elderly and the growing numbers of people living with dementia.
“Some colleagues from the EU have been anxious about their future in the UK as Brexit approaches. We assured them that we want them to stay and gave practical help with the application process to enable them to do so.”
Settled status means there is no time limit on how long EU citizens, who have been living here continuously for five years, can remain in the UK. Those here for less than five years will need to apply for pre-settled status, with a view to obtaining settled status later.
Ana Maria Ghenea, originally from Romania and a Nursing Assistant at Radbrook Nursing Home, said: “The workshop was very helpful and applying for early settlement status is such a relief. I don’t know anyone else in my situation who has been supported by their employers in this way. It also means I will be able to help my sister and husband with the process when they make their applications in March.”
The Home Office is testing the application process before the EU Settlement Scheme opens fully to the public on 30 March 2019. The UK government has committed to protecting the rights of EU citizens and their family members currently living in the UK. This includes the right to live here, work here and access public services such as healthcare and benefits.
Shrewsbury-based Morris Care is part of the fifth generation, family-run Morris & Company Group, and has six nursing Homes throughout Shropshire and Cheshire.