There has been condemnation of the Government’s new Immigration points system today in excluding care workers and ignoring the vital role that they’ve played during the recent Coronavirus pandemic.
Critics are concerned about the lack of visa options for foreign care workers in the new points system that is due to come into force on 1st January 2021 when the freedom of movement between the UK and EU will end.
Recent Government documents published on the 13th July reveal plans to deny visas to low skilled workers whose previous occupations as such as care workers; cleaners, porters all vital to the NHS. Other occupations affected may include hospitality workers and labourers and other low skilled construction workers if they are unable to meet the strict criteria set on their applications.
Campaigners against the Immigration system (that is similar to the existing Australian immigration points based system) announced earlier this year by the Home Secretary, Priti Patel; are now branding the scheme as potentially “disastrous” and “shambolic”.
The secretary of the GMB union; Rehana Azam, branded the rules as “embarrassing” in view of the role care workers have played during the recent COVID-19 pandemic saying that the new rules “make no consideration or acknowledgement of the vital job that care workers have been doing these past months”
The Chief Executive of Care England, Martin Green said that the Governments decision not to include social care workers within the vital workers NHS scheme was another example of how the Government treatment of the care sector staff. While Unison said the rules will make it harder to recruit care workers.
Satbir Singh of the Joint Council for the Welfare of Immigrants (ICW) reflected on the move saying that “We’ve gone from clapping care staff, to calling them ‘low skilled’ in a matter of weeks”.