A petition that calls for the union between Canada, Australia, New Zealand and the UK is circulating online.
The movement was started by a UK man named James Skinner, who was inspired to do so after having a disappointing experience travelling between the countries. Earlier in his life, he moved from the UK to Australia and managed to settle down nicely; landing a great job, home, and group of friends that he could rely on. But because of visa restrictions and difficulties obtaining permanent residency, he was forced to leave the country and everything he worked so hard to build behind. Now, he lives in Vancouver, where he fears it could happen to him all over again.
Enter the Commonwealth Freedom of Movement Organization, which advocates for the freedom of movement between people between the four countries. Its description onreads as follows: "We believe in the citizens of the United Kingdom, Canada, Australia and New Zealand benefiting from a freedom of movement initiative, advancing the ever-growing cultural, historical, economical and political connections that we already share through our Commonwealth ties."
The petition calls for closer ties between the four countries by building on their already-established relationships and socio-economic bonds. Australia and New Zealand already have policy in place (the Trans-Tasman Travel Arrangement, or TTTA) that allows for free movement between the two countries, but Skinner is hoping that the UK and Canada can join in on the benefit.
"We are virtually the same people. The only thing that divides us is the cover of our passports," Skinner tells CBC in March.
It seems that many people are also in favour of a the idea of free movement between the countries. A survey carried out by The Royal Commonwealth Society shows that 70% of Australians, 75% of Canadians, 82% of New Zealanders, and 58% of British citizens were in support of the idea. Only time will tell if such an arrangement will actually pull through.