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Leaving the EU: Departmental Staff

Volume 618: debated on Monday 5 December 2016

19. What assessment her Department has made of the implications of the UK leaving the EU for (a) the number of and (b) skills required by its staff. (907633)

The Home Office constantly reviews its capabilities in order to deliver the Government’s agenda. Work is under way to understand and respond to the immediate capability impacts as a result of the decision to leave the European Union.

The Secretary of State has just confirmed that the 3 million EU citizens in the UK will have to be documented. If that processing adds roughly 10% to the Home Office workload, does the Minister accept that it will cost at least £100 million a year and require 3,000 extra staff? If he does not, what is his estimate?

Let me make it clear that people who are here from elsewhere in the EU working legally do not need to receive additional documentation at this time. I reassure them that their status is assured. What happens in the future is a matter for the negotiations, but I make it absolutely clear that no additional documentation is needed at this stage.

May I make the case to the Minister for updating the systems and the use of computers and information technology in border control—particularly as, with Brexit, we will need to count people in and count people out more effectively—and for investment in our ports, such as the port of Dover?

Certainly, exit checks introduced in 2015 have given us an additional tool to track people as they enter and, in particular, leave the country. New technology, such as e-gates, has helped very much in that regard.