MPI Europe Webcast: Experts discuss Brexit amid the pandemic

COVID-19, the Withdrawal Agreement and Citizens’ Rights: No time to waste

Thursday, 22 October 2020
3:00 p.m. CEST (Brussels, Berlin) / 2:00 p.m. BST (London) / 9:00 a.m. ET (NYC, DC)  


Aliyyah Ahad, Associate Policy Analyst, MPI Europe

Marina Fernandez, Senior Researcher, Migration Observatory, University of Oxford

Nastasja Fuxa, Legal and Policy Officer, Union Citizenship Rights and Free Movement (JUST.D.3), Equality and Union Citizenship, Directorate-General for Justice and Consumers, European Commission

Andy Heath, Citizens Rights, Deputy Director, UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office

Anton Sevasta, Chief Executive Officer, Identity Malta Agency

Betty Sieperda, Brexit Project Lead, Immigration and Naturalization Service, the Netherlands

Yoram Vanmaekelbergh, Brexit Citizens’ Rights Coordinator, EU-UK Relations Task Force, Ministry of Justice and Security, the Netherlands






Meghan Benton, Director of Research, MPI International Programme and MPI Europe

MPI Europe Webinar


With the Brexit transition period quickly coming to an end, the United Kingdom and EU Member States are in a race against time to finalise and start implementing their withdrawal agreement plans on citizens’ rights. But during what should have been a critical planning period, the COVID-19 pandemic dramatically reoriented priorities and brought additional strains for both governments as well as EU nationals in the United Kingdom and UK nationals in the European Union.

This Migration Policy Institute Europe webinar will explore how governments’ withdrawal agreement implementation plans have been affected by COVID-19, and the potential implications on citizens’ rights at the end of the transition period and beyond. Which populations are most at risk of being left behind at the intersection between Brexit and the pandemic? What contingency measures could mitigate these vulnerabilities and keep implementation timelines on track? How can governments do smart outreach to groups that may have more immediate health and economic concerns, or are increasingly isolated either at home or overseas? With no time to lose, how can governments in the European Union capitalise on the lessons from the United Kingdom’s EU Settlement Scheme and other regularisation programmes to get a jump start on implementing the withdrawal agreement before January 2021? And what actions and investments are needed for the post-registration period, e.g. the monitoring of UK and EU nationals’ ability to access rights as stipulated under the withdrawal agreement?