by Rhiannon Copeland
Jetesa is a Member in Lewisham. She arrived in the UK in the late 90s as a Kosovan refugee. She had indefinite leave to remain granted but always wanted British citizenship. One of the first things she said to me when I first met her was ‘I want a British passport’.
Unfortunately, financially it just wasn’t possible. It costs about £1,330 and Jetesa often experienced financial abuse. Jetesa also didn’t have any ID or a bank account.
As part of her support I worked with Jetesa to help her claim the PIP she was entitled to. A back payment from this was enough to cover the assessment fee so Jetesa could start the process.
We needed to get her registered with a GP, who could complete the English language test exemption form Jetesa needed. We also had to find her two referees who had known her for more than three years.
After a year of being patient and determined she was finally granted British citizenship!
Jetesa's ceremony was held in Lewisham in April. She was able to have a private ceremony so that she could have the time and support she needed to read the Allegiance to the Crown statement. It went really well and Jetesa is so happy to have achieved this long term goal.