British in Italy is relaunching our ‘CONTACT YOUR SINDACO’ initiative.
Our future in Italy could depend on them
So we are asking you, where possible, to make contact with your local Sindaco and deliver a letter and a number of questions which they can use to help them consider the impact of Brexit on their local community and services. If you have already been in contact through our first campaign then we would encourage you to make a follow up meeting.
Its very simple, and we would ask you to do the following:
1) Download the letter that you will find HERE Adjust it to suit your situation including the name of your comune etc. We have written it in the plural as it may be easier to go along with another British national.
2) Deliver the letter to your comune, preferably by hand. Ask for it to be ‘protocollato’ and if possible make an appointment with the sindaco, assessore or the responsabile ufficio civile (anagrafe).
3) When you get the appointment, take along a copy of the Questions for the Sindaco document HERE. It might be a good idea to go through the letter first and then hand over the list of questions.
4) Our main aim at this stage is to raise awareness of the issues involved. Essentially, if there is a No Deal Brexit, on 30th March 2019, we British citizens resident in Italy will become ‘irregolari’ (or ‘illegali’). The
Italian government has assured us that they are preparing legislation to give us a new legal status as Third Country Nationals (cittadini di paesi terzi) – that is, extra comunitari. However, there are less than 70 days before 29th March, Brexit day, and there is still no legislation in place. Explain that we are urging them to put pressure on the government, particularly through ANCI, to legislate quickly.
5) Explain that the government has suggested a 6 to 9 months ‘grace’ or ‘transition’ period after 29th March during which we will continue to enjoy our existing rights as EU citizens. We will all be expected to re-register under the new legislation during that ‘grace’ period. They, the sindaco/a, the assessore, the responsabile ufficio civile (anagrafe) will need to deal with the public administration aspects of this process.
6) Explain that even if there is a ratified Withdrawal Agreement (Accordo di Recesso), they , the sindaco/a, assessore , and other responsabili di enti pubblici will need information from the government as to what procedures to put in place – administrative procedures for the anagrafe and other enti pubblici, re- programming of computer systems, staff training and awareness etc.
7) Using the Questions for the Sindaco document, ask the sindaco to give you names and suggestions for how to contact people who may be able to help, in particular the names of the right people in the ULSS as health care may be one of our main concerns.
8) If you need help at any stage, please write to us at firstname.lastname@example.org and we will try to help.
9) After the meeting, please write to us to tell us how it went – and good luck!
Thank you for your help.
We are often asked what will our future look like post Brexit?
This question we cannot answer, but the most likely difficulty we face post Brexit is that of administrative hurdles. What do we do when we want to renew a tessera sanitaria but we are no longer EU citizens, what do we do when we have to apply for documents at the comune but we are no longer EU citizens. These are not things that would necessarily affect us immediately post Brexit, but are likely to affect everyone of us at some point. With no framework in place to deal with it, it could leave us ALL in Limbo.
Can you imagine the time and stress of having to deal with local Comuni in explaining what our rights are, having to take documents to the comune to prove it, having to argue with local officials who do not know how the law applies to us not having had clear instructions from the Italian government on how to deal with British citizens after Brexit, the amount of visits required to sort out simple issues? You probably can because we have all had first hand experience of Italian bureaucracy. This could be infintesimally more difficult unless a process is in place to deal with us. The Italian Government have made a very generous promise to us, which we are incredibly grateful for, but now we need to make sure they legislate in time.