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Saturday, August 20, 2016
Letter to the Cabinet Office
the Cabinet Office, with copies to the various
Boundary Commission bodies, and certain other concerned
I write as the
the Pensioners Debout! site, and even more as an active
supporter of the campaign
www.votes-for-expat-brits.com and of the campaign for Expat
Citizens Rights in the EU.
Further I have
communication with Harry Shindler, the 95 year old campaigner
Political Representation for the British citizens abroad.
Harry draws attention to the words of the United Nations
Declaration of Human
Everyone has the
right to take part in the government of his country, directly
or through freely
Government is a signatory to that Declaration.
Yet the British Government refuses to bring
forward a long
promised Bill present in the last Election Manifesto for 'Votes-for-
In contrast France and Italy have long
understood the need
to recognise the value and the need to recognise the Citizen
Abroad. They have
constituency ‘deputies’ or assembly members to represent them at
cuts off our representation after 15 years.
When I first retired to France
at the age of 69 (I am now 84) I had the chance to vote for up
to 20 years. That
was cut dead by the Blair Government without any reference to my
opinion– thus taking
away quite arbitrarily my Right
to vote, notably important in the Referendum–
The Citizen abroad has huge ties to the United
Kingdom – Socially
(family), Culturally and
Financially.I and my
wife are in all
three ways so linked, that the current Brexit approach could
seriously harm our
way of life.
But these are incidental to the urgent need
represented in our National Government – The Government of the
Nation. The Nation is the
assemblage of Citizens,
wherever they live.The
has responsibility for all citizens, and should have a
sensitivity towards them, as the expatriate
should have towards the Government. Currently this dialogue and
mutual interest is
That severance can only be healed by creating
Understand the following points.
Citizens have strong links with Britain.
immensely proud of
their British roots.
Citizens have little interest in the minutiae of management of
constituency, but they most surely often have an interest in the
activities of Britain
in the World, and the particular part that they themselves play
existing MPs, conscious of their own parochial
interests are reluctant to extend the franchise of their localised constituency to
They would probably vote down a simple extension of the
Citizens have variousproblems
relate to British Government deliberations – pensions – treaty
..health .. work
permits.. investment/savings opportunities.. bank accounts …
cross border movements..,
General Election & Referendum more than 250,000 Citizens
abroad registered to Vote. Remember
many including myself and my wife were prevented from voting.
I am not here
suggesting that at this
time one proposes as many
overseas constituencies as has France.But one could start with
TWO minimum, one for
Europe and one for the rest of the World.
As the years pass, and
the notion becomes
accepted as normal, then the number could increase.
At this time one
detects a resentment on
the part of many expatriates of all ages. towards the British
Government Many would
raise the two fingers to it. That attitude is picked up by our
fulfilling the promise to grant the
vote-for-life in the manner proposed here, this could be turned
about, so that
the expatriate takes a pride in their Government.