MP Calls for Legal Right to Consular Assistance for British Nationals

Hannah Bardell MP (pictured) has called for UK citizens to be given a legal right to consular assistance and enshrine a duty of care towards British nationals who face difficulties overseas.

The call comes as thousands of British nationals have been stranded around the world due to the coronavirus crisis, with many facing difficulties accessing support.

The Livingston MP has campaigned for better consular support after two constituents died in suspicious circumstances abroad and is founder and Chair of the All-Party Parliamentary Group on Deaths Abroad, Consular Services and Assistance.

Commenting, SNP MP Hannah Bardell said:

“Thousands of UK citizens have been stranded abroad through no fault of their own – and, while we welcome the efforts made to repatriate them, more needs to be done.

“The lack of support for citizens abroad is a long-standing issue that coronavirus has turned into a crisis for those affected.

“The UK government has no legal duty of care for British nationals overseas, and the guidance on who should receive help is vague, confusing and at the discretion of consular staff.

“It’s time to put a right to consular assistance in law and ensure that citizens in difficulty abroad receive the help they deserve.”