Non UK-residents welcome, says council convener

The council’s convener has stressed Shetland will remain a welcoming place for people and businesses from outside the UK.

Malcolm Bell has spoken after SIC leaders met to discuss key issues including the future for island communities in the wake of the referendum result.

Mr Bell commented after political leader Gary Robinson and chief executive, Mark Boden, met the Undersecretary of State for Scotland, Lord Dunlop, as well as a team of civil servants.

SIC Convenor Malcolm Bell explains the issues that the council face with the town hall restorations Photo:Dave Donaldson
SIC Convenor Malcolm Bell Photo:Dave Donaldson

“First of all, it’s extremely important that we emphasise that Shetland is – and will remain – a welcoming place for non-UK businesses and individuals to visit and do business in.

“Clearly, the international political landscape is in flux and there is a period of uncertainty ahead, but I would like to reassure EU citizens living and working here that Shetland continues to value their presence and their many contributions to the community.”

Political leader Gary Robinson added: “It is, of course, far too early to say what will happen in the months and years to come, and that depends on how the UK government develops its policy for negotiation with the EU.

SIC political leader Gary Robinson. Photo: Dave Donaldson
SIC political leader Gary Robinson. Photo: Dave Donaldson

“This morning, the leaders of the two other islands’ councils and I had a very productive meeting with Lord Dunlop, where we discussed how the process of the UK leaving the EU might develop.

“The minister and his civil servants were very supportive of involving the island councils and communities in the development of the government’s position, especially on areas of business which particularly affect the islands.”

Mr Boden has already arranged to meet Scotland Office civil servants to brief them on issues relating to fishing and aquaculture.

The Scotland Office will then put these points forward to the other government departments as they develop the government’s position.

The council says it will also be working with key Shetland stakeholders, such as the Shetland Fishermen’s Association, to advance the case for what is in Shetland’s best interests directly to relevant ministers.


Add Your Comment
  • ian tinkler

    • June 28th, 2016 0:00

    Just some EU non-UK residents welcome. Just try and get a permanent work permit if your from the Commonwealth. Their families died to free Europe, no right of entry now, something wrong there. Quite non discriminatory, black, brown, white, Yellow, if you’re not from the EU, just F@:k off. Thats EU Law, the one so endorsed by the aforementioned white council folk spouting their PC crap. Who said the EU was fair to all, it is actually disgustingly discriminatory, the UK can do much better. I loath UKIP but the hypocrisy of the EU promoting piltocks is only matched by their discriminatory sense of self righteous bull.

    • Alvin Leong

      • June 28th, 2016 10:06

      I was a Commonwealth non-EU citizen and I was subjected to all the crap because of the free movement of EU citizens. I suggest you look up the rules and fees for Tier 2, FLR and ILR on UKBA website. My wife and I had paid over £10,000 in visa fees over the years while EU citizens can come and stay for free. Also, my wife now had to pay £200 a year for “IHS” to use the NHS even though she is working 2 jobs and had paid tax and NI for over 10 years while a EU citizen can use it for free without paying anything. They are allowed to claim benefits the moment the arrives and claim for their family who are not even here while if we claim anything, we will be deported. This is why, despite being a non-white we voted for Leave and UKIP, at least they are more fair than the EU.

      • Johan Adamson

        • June 29th, 2016 9:03

        I noticed that a lot of non-EU migrants commentated on TV about how they had voted leave too. The BBC and the polls seem to leave this out of the equation and only show that it is white uneducated males who voted to leave because of immigration (maybe women and the rest of the world are invisible?). Through out the campaign they seem to have missed the fact that we want immigration (although Boris was saying it and he has been chastised by the Tories). He probably had a non-EU nanny. Keeping repeating the line that all of this is fuelled by immigration does not make it more true. They are about to leave everything else out of the equation again because they dont understand what this was really about. All the PM has spoken about is immigration again.

      • Alvin Leong

        • June 29th, 2016 12:07

        Johan, I voted leave for 2 reasons, fairness and future for my child(ren).
        A non-EU citizen need to apply for and renew a visa to stay in the UK once every 2 years or so. It costs over £1000 each time and yet they are not allowed any social security even if they are working and paying tax and NI. An EU citizen need not pay anything and can get everything. Where is the fairness in that?
        My wife, a non-EU citizen, has to renew her visa to stay in 2 years’ time which approval can be rejected for any number of reason including an incorrectly filled in form. She could then face deportation away from my child(ren). The reason for such strict, expensive and difficult visa application was because the UK government had to make space for EU citizens which cannot be controlled.
        At least with UKIP, they want a point based system for everyone which is fair in my eyes.

  • Brian Smith

    • June 28th, 2016 7:33

    As Aditya Chakrabortty says in today’s Guardian, ‘The leave politicians have … “opened up a Pandora’s box” of resentment and suspicion. The consequences won’t be faced by old Etonians or stripy-blazered Ukippers. They’ll descend on a grandad heading home from Friday prayers, or a Romanian mum caught on a bus speaking her mother tongue.’

    • John Tulloch

      • June 28th, 2016 10:34

      Really, Brian? Wouldn’t you have thought, after forty three years in the wonderful EU that our country would be better than that by now?

      And isn’t it strange how all these unpleasant right wing groups are flourishing across the entire EU? These folks, the Le Penn dynasty and others, were going strong, long before UKIP appeared.

      Your rhetorical forecasts from the Guardian, in or out of the EU, are issues of law and order and could just as easily be faced by English people or others in Scotland – which is why we maintain a police force.

  • Laurence Paton

    • June 28th, 2016 15:16

    I am fully agree with you Alvin. You have clearly been discriminated against.
    Perhaps the Pro E.U. commentators on here will give a credible answer to you on your unfair treatment.

    Since the referendum I have shared John Pilger’s article “why the British said no to Europe ” with many friends and online commentators.

    It gives a more detailed analysis than just labeling over 17 million British citizens as intolerant bigots.

    Which is more or less the line take by the likes of the Guardian Newspaper and the veiled comments of Nicola Sturgeon.

    Best Regards


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