To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, with reference to her Department's funding for voluntary and community sector organisations to support vulnerable and at-risk EEA citizens to apply to the EU Settlement Scheme, what criteria her Department uses to determine whether applicants are (a) vulnerable and (b) at-risk.
There is no one definition of vulnerability, and to define vulnerability as a particular set of characteristics or groups could risk us missing particular individuals.
However, following extensive consultation both internally within the Authority and across Other Government Departments (OGDs,), UKVI has set out the groups likely to be identified as vulnerable and who may therefore have additional needs to be met to enable them to apply for the Scheme. The following key groups are likely to be identified as vulnerable and therefore would have additional needs to be met in order to apply for the Scheme. These may include but are not limited to the following:
Some elderly people, disabled people and people with serious health conditions (e.g. physical or mental impairment, are socially excluded as a result of their circumstances);
Those who have experienced modern slavery and/or trafficking;
Those who have experienced domestic abuse (to include non-violent forms of abuse (emotional, psychological etc);
Those with no fixed abode (e.g. Gypsy, Roma and Traveller communities, rough sleepers); Vulnerable children.
Whilst many EU citizens may only fall under one of these categories, it is by no means an exhaustive list and it is likely that some will have multiple needs which will have to be met in a clear and accessible way.
The Home Office is in favour of implementing a mixed model approach, which can meet the needs of the diversity of vulnerable EU citizens, enabling a combination of offerings to give citizens the best chance of making their application. This user-needs approach is deployed by a range of other organisations who need to handle vulnerable citizens, including those in OGDs and private sector organisations, such as those providing financial services.