Four million EU and UK citizens face a second Christmas of uncertainty about their right to remain in the countries they now call home. Despite signs that negotiators have made progress on this issue, they are being treated as bargaining chips and are left unsure of their position, especially if there is no deal between the UK and the EU.
Trade unions and businesses are deeply concerned that our friends, colleagues and workers continue to be in limbo. They deserve better treatment, given their vital contribution to our communities, businesses and public services.
The right to remain of the four million must be resolved. There must be certainty whatever the outcome of the Brexit negotiations. The UK government and EU27 should unilaterally guarantee their status and future rights before Christmas. Neither side need wait for the other to do this. If many who go home for holidays simply do not come back, this would have a damaging impact on critical public services and growth.