No Brexit impact assessment yet made by Islington Council

Islington Council leader Richard Watts

Islington Council Leader Richard Watts. Photograph: Islington Council

No assessments on the impact of Brexit on Islington have yet been made by Islington Council, according to information released under the Freedom of Information Act.

The Citizen requested on 1 August that the council provide any formal impact/risk analysis relating to Brexit undertaken by the local authority.

In response, Islington’s information governance team stated: “Information not held. No such assessments have yet taken place.”

Neighbouring boroughs have formally undertaken studies to determine Brexit’s impact.

Camden, for example, formed a working group to determine the implications of the UK exiting the EU in December 2016, whilst Hackney published a report to determine Brexit’s impact on its population growth and planning in April 2017.

Whilst Islington Council has made specific efforts to advise and guarantee the rights of its EU citizens, no such wider assessment of the vote’s impact of the kinds undertaken in Camden and Hackney appear to have been made in Islington.

Cllr Richard Watts (Lab, Tollington), leader of Islington Council, said: “The complete lack of clarity from government about Brexit, the shape of any Brexit deal and the way government intends to mitigate harmful effects from Brexit has made it extremely difficult so far for councils, including Islington, to carry out meaningful assessments of the likely impact of Brexit on the country and our borough.

“We are very concerned about the possible consequences of Brexit in many different ways, from the impact on the many EU citizens who live in Islington, to concerns over hate crime, and on staff in key roles such as the care sector.

“Since the Brexit vote, the council has taken action to help people who face particular issues, including our residents and staff who are EU citizens.

“Following on from motions passed at full council, we have continually written to the prime minister calling for the full rights of EU citizens to be guaranteed.

“As well as creating a webpage that provides practical advice for EU citizens, we have held regular advice sessions in partnership with specialist immigration lawyers Wesley Gryk and Wilson’s Solicitors.

“We have also written to the government seeking reassurances about the future of vital funding that supports our work to help local people into work, which currently comes from the EU.

“We will continue to monitor the situation and take appropriate action as necessary when further clarity is forthcoming from the government.”