The vote to leave Europe has left an indelible mark with some expats feeling overlooked and disenfranchised. Expats who have lived here in Spain for over 15 years were denied a vote. With no leave plan and no precedent for the Leave process to provide some reassurance that everyone’s concerns will at least be listened to, for British people living abroad the waiting game is not an option.
Thousands of expats in Spain rely entirely on their pension to survive, and while the downward trend of the pound is perhaps easing, this has already had an effect. Everything British people have taken for granted is in question: Will our pension stop? Will we be able to continue to work here? Will there be double-taxation? Will we have to pay for private health care? Can we own property? The list goes on.
BREXPATS IN MIJAS was a Facebook group set up by five expats in the Mijas area specifically to gather relevant information and distribute it as soon as it is made available, but within two days of being launched the number of followers had reached close to 800. The group was renamed BREXPATS IN SPAIN, since our predicament is shared by all British people who have set up their home and business in Spain. Our hope is that we can continue to expand, by people in other areas forming their own satellite portal to share and distribute information and resources provided under the BREXPATS IN SPAIN banner.
However, it must be stressed that we are not a politically-biased group. Nor are we a protest group, or profit-seeking. We do not mean to change the outcome of the referendum. Our mission is to understand the issues that could affect our position as British expats here in Spain, and our aim is to gather and freely impart relevant information and changes to legislation. We will be the voice you need for you to make the most informed decisions, regardless of how you may have voted.
In order to do this, we need your help, and the help of local experts and dignitaries in the community. Already, we have voluntary legal and financial advisers on our side. We are seeking representation in local and central government, both in the UK and here is Spain. Our own mayor, Juan Carlos Maldonaldo, has pledged his full support and the promise to raise our awareness of developments as they happen. BREXPATS IN SPAIN is in the process of becoming a legalised Asociación, an important step in forging and maintaining relationships in our host country. We urge every expat in Spain who would expect the help and support of their local council to be fully legal also.
The first free public meeting of BREXPATS IN SPAIN will be held at the Tamisa Golf Hotel, Mijas Costa, on Wednesday 27th July at 7pm. Come and have a drink on us, and meet members of the BREXPATS team and hear what some of our experts have to say. All are welcome. Please bring a friend. Above all, bring your Brexit questions and concerns. With your views on board, our voice can only get louder.
Facebook Group: BREXPATS IN SPAIN Website: www.brexpats.es – Email: [email protected]