|TCI Islander status consultation to end Feb. 17||| Print ||
|Thursday, 09 February 2012 10:01|
There are just a few days left for those who are interested in having their say on the pathway to citizenship in the Turks and Caicos Islands.
February 17 is the deadline for submissions of written responses to a questionnaire and other comments being collected by Consultative Forum members over the last three months.
The public consultation was launched at the Nov. 17 meeting of the Consultative Forum, which heard a presentation from and made suggestions to Senior Adviser on Immigration Lorraine Rogerson, Ministry of Border Control and Labour Permanent Secretary Clara Gardiner and Larry Swann.
In a closed session of the forum Feb. 7 at the NJS Francis building on Grand Turk, Rogerson and Under Secretary in the Ministry of Border Control Willette Swann brought the members up to date on the current series of public meetings on the pathway to TCI status.
The forum and the ministry have been providing resource persons for meetings on all the islands, and participants have been urged to submit written responses to a questionnaire on the proposed measures.
Answers received by the Consultative Forum to the 24-question document will be tabulated, and a comprehensive evaluation will be presented by the forum to the governor for consideration. That will provide the basis for setting in place the new immigration ordinance, policies and procedures.
The process is expected to take several months, with a draft ordinance expected by May.
Once the new ordinance is drafted, it will take the same path as all other proposed ordinances, including presentation to the Advisory Council and then the Consultative Forum, before finally being signed into law by the governor.
Establishing a clear pathway to obtaining citizenship as a Turks and Caicos Islander (Belonger) and Permanent Resident Certificates (PRC) is one of the eight milestones set by the U.K. before new elections are held.Questions for consultation on TC Islander status
The Consultative Forum is seeking comment on changes to obtaining status in the Turks and Caicos Islands.
Submit your answers to the following questions via e-mail to
by Feb. 17. Explanatory documents and questionnaires can be found online at www.gov.tc.
2: Should a worker in the TCI be eligible to apply for Permanent Resident Certificate (PRC) after five; six; eight; nine; 10; or more years?
3: Should there be a clear distinction drawn between those workers who can qualify over time for PRC and those who cannot?
4: If there are to be such distinctions, on what basis should they be made? Should there, for example, be a regularly updated list of designated shortage occupations on the basis of labour market analysis and consultation?
5: If there are to be temporary workers with fixed term work permits who cannot progress to PRC, what should the term limits on their work permits be?
6: Do you agree that knowledge of the TCI and of a specified level of English language should be required before any applicant can be granted PRC?
7: Should the three different categories of PRC recommended by the Immigration Review Commission be introduced, including some with restrictions on work; or should the system be simplified by having a single category of PRC, without limitation or restriction?
8: Do you think it should be possible to qualify for PRC purely by investment in the Turks and Caicos Islands? If so, what do think would be the right level of investment?
9: What do you think should be the rules to be attached to this kind of provision? Should investors be required to be ordinarily resident in the territory before getting PRC, as in other administrations? Should it be possible to get an undertaking from government that a PRC will be issued, in advance of making an investment?
10: Do you support the introduction of long term residence permits lasting 25 years for homeowners and business investors? What do you think should be the rules attached to this kind of provision? For example, should it be possible for time spent ordinarily resident in the TCI on such a permit be allowed to count towards qualifying for PRC, if other conditions are met?
11: Should there be provision for an alternative form of long term temporary residence, with freedom to work, which does not necessarily lead to PRC, British Overseas Territory Citizenship (BOTC) or Turks and Caicos Islander status? What should be the requirements for such a status, and what conditions would be applied?
12: What do you think should be the further requirements –including length of residence as a PRC holder and/or BOTC- and what additional tests should be applied, in order for a BOTC to progress to TC Islander status?
13: Do you think British citizens should be required to obtain BOTC before being eligible for Turks and Caicos Islander status?
14 : Do you think that young people born in the TCI should have a separate, specific path to Turks and Caicos Islander status, and if so what should be the rules on this?
15: For how long do you think a couple should be married before a spouse can apply for Turks and Caicos Islander status?
16: Should there be provision for a spouse to obtain Turks and Caicos Islander status if their Turks and Caicos Islander spouse dies before the end of the qualifying period?
17: Should there be a new offence of entering into a marriage of convenience?
18: Should the Immigration Ordinance definition of “child” be reviewed, particularly with reference to stepchildren?
19: Should people applying for TCI status on the grounds of being a spouse have to pass the same tests, such as in Knowledge of the TCI or English language, as other applicants?
20: Should a new Commission be set up to decide TCI Status and PRC applications? How should membership of such a body be determined? Should there be provision for local involvement, for example by the proposed District Councils?
21: Should there be some kinds of control over the numbers of applications for TCI status which can be made and decided each year, for example by a cut-off date and/or quotas?
22: Would you support the 2004 Immigration Review Commission’s proposal for a one off “regularisation” programme to enable long term residents to obtain Turks and Caicos Islander status? On what basis would such regularisation decisions be made?
23: Should there be provision for revocation of TCI Status in the circumstances identified by the Immigration Review Commission?
24: Do you have any additional comments or suggestions which you would like to see taken into account?
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