In Europe, citizens that hold an European Union passport are able to travel freely with full travel and work rights in participating EU countries as part of the Schengen Agreement.
Similarly, a survey of around 4000 people in the four Commonwealth nations of Australia, New Zealand, the United Kingdom and Canada found that more than 80% of the citizens in those countries were in support of a system of free movement between those countries. The survey was conducted by the Royal Commonwealth Society in London.
Australia is being pushed to join a new visa-free migration bloc which will enable people of the participating countries to live and work freely in these nations.
The survey’s results showed:
- 70% of Australians were in favour of the idea
- 75% of Canadians were in favour of the idea
- 82% of New Zealander’s were in favour of the idea
A large amount of the support received in the survey was from individuals under the age of 35.
On the other hand, the policy was least favoured by nationals of the United Kingdom with only 58% supporting the idea. Currently policies in the United Kingdom are working in the other way with policy’s being formed to restrict the work rights of foreigners in the UK.
Tim Hewish, author of the survey and director of policy and research at the ‘Royal Commonwealth Society’ told The Guardian newspaper that there was ‘immense support from Australians, Canadians, and New Zealanders’ for the ability to move freely amongst the participating countries to live and work.
Tim Hewish also mentioned “Collectively we possess a unique bond which needs protecting. We share a language, a legal system, and a Queen”.