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Devon for Everyone

Immigration

Citizenship Ceremonies

The purpose of the Citizenship ceremony is to provide a welcome for new Citizens into our community, for them to take an oath or affirmation to the Queen and a pledge of loyalty to the United Kingdom.

Under the Nationality, Immigration and Asylum Act 2002, every applicant aged 18 years or over who are accepted for naturalisation or registration as a British Citizen must attend.

The Devon Register Office is responsible for arranging citizenship ceremonies for applicants who live in Devon. We are not involved in the application process itself, to find out more you must visit the Home Office website.

When an applicant receives a letter of approval from the Home Office they should contact the Citizenship Administrator to obtain details of which ceremony they may attend. The office details will be clearly shown on this invitation letter.

Asylum seekers support

An asylum seeker is a person who comes to the UK, often fleeing persecution, torture or war, and applies for refugee status. Until this status is granted this person remains an asylum seeker. Asylum seekers frequently experience homelessness and face real challenges in finding accommodation or accessing medical and other services.

Devon County Council has a legal responsibility to offer assistance to asylum seekers under the National Assistance Act of 1948. We have a statutory duty to provide accommodation and benefits to asylum seekers whilst they await the outcome of their case with the Home Office.

However, following changes in the law due to the Immigration and Asylum Act of 1999, asylum seekers that have arrived after April 2000 no longer have a right to assistance and do not have to be provided for by the Council. Instead, the Home Office provides support through the National Asylum Support Service (NASS). More information. Visit the Home Office Website on Asylum Seekers.

Migrant Workers

An increasingly important part of our economic strength comes from our migrant worker population. They are a welcome and valuable part of our society and economy. However there are some unique challenges and barriers to people who arrive in a foreign country. The Council and its partners are working together to address these challenges and reduce these barriers.

Topline Summaries:

250 people have attended either individual or group citizenship ceremonies between 1 April 2007 and 31 March 2008 - Source: Devon Register Office

In the South West 995 Asylum Seekers were receiving help with accommodation, 170 of those were receiving financial assistance at the end of June 2006 - Source: SWO State of The South West report

Number of Migrant Worker (estimate) in Devon in 2006/07 - 3540 - Source: National Insurance

In 2005/6 nearly 42,000 migrated into Devon from other parts of the UK and abroad. The net increase in population over this period due to migration was 6400 people – source: ONS

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