Sunday 24 January 2016

Scrap the £35k threshold for non-EU citizens settling in the UK

There are so many on-line petitions around these days that I often don't sign them favouring other forms oif political action instead.  I think this one is really important as it not not only tackles someething that is manifestly unfair but will also impact on public services, especially health.

In April (2016) the Home Office and Theresa May are introducing a pay threshold for people to remain here, after already working here for 5 years. This only affects non-EU citizens who earn under £35,000 a year, which unfairly discriminates against charity workers, nurses, students and others.

This ridiculous measure is only going to affect 40,000 people who have already been living and working in the UK for 5 years, contributing to our culture and economy. It will drive more workers from the NHS and people from their families. This empty gesture will barely affect the immigration statistics. It's a waste of time, money and lives.

This is the first time the UK has discriminated against low-earners. £35k is an unreasonably high threshold. The UK will lose thousands of skilled workers.

Sign the petition to the UK Government and Parliament HERE


Anonymous said...

Clever these Tories, aren't they? NHS staffing? Agency workers costing twice as much as it costs to actually train new staff? No more bursaries for nursing staff? Now this,
Could it be that Theresa May is actually a left wing mole whose mission is to stop the developed UK cruelly exploiting non EU workers and doing this by the devilishly clever method of sending them home unless we pay them a reasonable income (which we won't because 'the NHS is unsustainable') thus punishing us and them at the same time ? Expect the Daily Mail to praise her as a realist who's prepared to defy Political Correctness Gone Mad and bravely state that these foreigners are a threat to Our Way of Life, South East Property Values, the Sunday Roast and the memory of Dame Anna Neagle before realising what she's up to and denouncing her as a closet 'Corbynista' dedicated to the overthrow of all that Mary Berry holds dear.
Mike Hine

Anonymous said...

Actually the government will tell you that nurses are exempt from this rule and have been placed on the list of occupations where there is a shortage. However in practice around one-third of those who apply to come here are still being refused. See story below from the Brent and Kilburn Times, 15 January 2016.

Sixty new nurses could not start work at the London North West Healthcare NHS Trust, which runs Central Middlesex and Northwick Park hospitals, between April and November last year.

The figures were released yesterday by the Royal College of Nursing (RCN) after the Times reported last week that the health trust has the highest number of nursing vacancies in the capital.

A RCN report showed the vacancy rate for nurses in the trust stood at 30 per cent – though health chiefs put the figure at 21pc instead.

RCN London regional director, Bernell Bussue, said: “Right across London, health employers are trying to address a shortage of registered nurses, yet the government’s artificial immigration cap has prevented nurses from coming to work here in our city.

“Our nursing colleagues from overseas have always played a huge role in London’s health service and the government should value and support their work.

“London needs more nurses. Nursing should be kept on the Home Office shortage occupation list so that nursing staff are able to move and settle here in the numbers we need to keep patients safe.”

The RCN revealed on Thursday that more than 200 foreign nurses due to start work at the trust had applied for restricted certificates of sponsorship – the document an organisation needs to be able to recruit an employee who is from outside the European Economic Area.

But 29pc of them were denied permission to work in the UK by the Home Office.

It was the highest number in London after the University College London Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, which saw 80 nurses being denied permission to work between April and November 2015.

Until November last year, the number of certificates that could be granted by the Home Office was limited before the government department temporarily placed nurses on the shortage occupation list.

The listing means nurses’ applications for certificates will be prioritised, and there will be no requirement for nurses to earn £35,000 or more in order to work in the UK.

A spokesman for the health trust said: “In common with a lot of trusts in London, we rely on nurses from overseas and we were pleased when nurses were placed on the Home Office’s shortage occupation list.”

A Home Office spokesman said: “The restrictions on Tier 2 visa places are designed to ensure businesses recruit from within the UK when people have the skills they need. Places are prioritised to ensure visas are granted to those the UK needs most.

“In October, the Home Secretary agreed to place nurses on the shortage occupation list on a short-term basis to make it easier for health trusts to fill vacancies over the winter months.

“The Migration Advisory Committee has been asked to review whether nurses should remain on the list and they will report on this next month.”