VC and College Heads urge UK guarantee of EU citizens' rights

VC and College Heads urge UK guarantee of EU citizens' rights

The Vice-Chancellor of Oxford University, Professor Louise Richardson, and the heads of 38 colleges and Permanent Private Halls have signed a letter to the Times arguing for the rights of EU citizens from outside the UK now living here to remain after Brexit. The letter reads:

Sir, We write to urge MPs to support the House of Lords amendment guaranteeing the right of EU citizens who live in Britain to remain here after Brexit. Oxford University relies on EU citizens as lecturers, researchers and support staff. If they lost their right to work here, our university would suffer enormous damage which, given our role in research, would have reverberations across the UK.

Our EU colleagues are not reassured by a government which tells them that deportation is not going to happen but declines to convert that assurance into law; some are worried, some are already making plans to leave. Many of our staff do not know whether absences abroad on research contracts will count against them. Others do not know, however longstanding their work and residence, whether their children will be able to remain in the UK.

These are real and immediate concerns. There is no public or parliamentary intent to harm our EU colleagues: that can be translated into reassurance by accepting the Lords amendment. We ask MPs to vote accordingly and join us in pressing for reciprocal arrangements for UK nationals in the EU.

Professor Louise Richardson, Vice-Chancellor, the University of Oxford; Professor Sir Drummond Bone, Balliol; Mr John Bowers, Brasenose; The Very Rev Dr Simon Gaine, Blackfriars; Rev Dr James Hanvey, Campion Hall; The Very Reverend Professor Martyn Percy, Christ Church; Professor Steven Cowley, Corpus Christi; Professor Sir Rick Trainor, Exeter; Professor Denise Lievesley, Green Templeton Colleger;  Rev Dr R Waller, Harris Manchester; Will Hutton, Hertford; Professor Sir Nigel Shadbolt, Jesus; Sir Jonathan Phillips, Keble; Professor Jonathan Michie, Kellogg; Mr Alan Rusbridger, Lady Margaret Hall; Dr Nick Brown, Linacre; Professor Sir David Clary, Magdalen; Sir Martin Taylor, Merton; Mr Miles Young, New; Ms Moira Wallace, Oriel; Dame Lynne Brindley, Pembroke; The Rev Dr Robert Ellis, Regent’s Park College; Prof Paul Madden, Queen’s; Dr Robert Chard, St Anne’s; Professor Margaret McMillan, St Antony’s; Professor Werner Jeanrond, St. Benet’s Hall; Professor Roger Ainsworth, St Catherine’s; Mrs Carole Souter, St Cross; Professor Keith Gull, St Edmund Hall; Professor Sir Gordon Duff, St Hilda’s; Dame Elish Angiolini, St Hugh’s; Professor Maggie Snowling, St John’s; Dr Alice Prochaska, Somerville; Sir Ivor Roberts, Trinity; Sir Ivor Crewe, University; Lord Ken McDonald, Wadham; Professor Dame Hermione Lee, Wolfson; Sir Jonathan Bate, Worcester; ; Rev Dr Michael Lloyd, Wycliffe Hall.