I saw a post on Instagram but I could not believe it. Migrants of the Windrush generation in the United Kingdom where being threatened with deportation. Before I had the chance to read a full article, my mum called from Trinidad and she asked about it. From what I’ve read many of these senior citizens arrived in the UK as children. Some may ask, why didn’t they apply for their papers when they came of age. The why doesn’t matter. It has also been revealed that vital paper work which could have proved when they arrived was destroyed by Home Office staff. The fact remains, the peoples of the Caribbean came on invitation and they were citizens of the United Kingdom on arrival. Therefore, they should be allowed the rights and privileges that citizenship entails. They should be given amnesty. Europeans are concerned about how they will be treated post Brexit. Clearly, this is a valuable lesson for expats everywhere. Here are four tips on what to do after you become an expat.
Know your rights
It can be intimidating but have some idea about immigration policy. Keep abreast of changing immigration policies and procedures to ensure you are on the right side of the law. You should be able to find information on the website of the relevant ministerial department responsible for immigration, security and law and order. Whenever your situation changes you get gain employment after studying, get married, become a parent, need to travel for work whatever, check if and how it will affect your status.
You should also know where you home country’s consulate is located and what services they provide.
Connect to the expat community
Having links within the expat community of you home country will help to keep you abreast of what’s happening at home and in your adopted country. It also means that you will have people you can trust in times of emergency. Its also helpful if you need references for work, school, apartment hunting and so on.
Have a backup plan
Always have a few back if things don’t go according to plan when you are settling in. You will always need all vital paper work in support of your stay (do have copies) and some savings.
Whatever you do, to keep your focus and remember why you left home. When times are tough, it gives you the courage to carry on if obstacles and/or loneliness set in.
Seize the day
Seize every positive opportunity that comes your way. Get to know your host country: people, art, culture heritage, and embrace it. When I initially left home, I didn’t plan to be gone forever. The longer I was away my hopes for the future began to change.
As the world turns, somethings will take a step back. Post BREXIT the repercussions will ripple all over the world. As expats we should pay attention to current events, especially those that could affect us.