limits on non-EU economic migration (July 2010)
Skills for Care have been working with the Migration Advisory Committee, employers and stakeholder representatives to promote the consultation on the "Level of an annual limit on economic migration to the UK". This work involved employer engagement with key organisations and representative bodies, an on-line (and paper based) survey with analysis and key messages and a stakeholder event that was held on 19th August.
These activities were designed to facilitate participation and engagement in shaping the new Government's policy around migration and to encourage dialogue between the adult England social care sector and the Migration Advisory Committee. The outputs from these activities were formulated into a report that contained both factual and anecdotal evidence. This report formed the "adult, England" chapter of the wider UK consultation undertaken by Skills for Care and Development.
A copy of this report MAC final response - September 2010 (pdf) was submitted to the Migration Advisory Committee on 7th September, 2010. The Migration Advisory Committee will draw upon all responses received and these will form part of their overall report to Government in the autumn of 2010.
Further updates will be released once these recommendations have been published
the government - deciding how the limit should operate
The intention of Government is to reduce net figures of migration back to the levels of the 1990's. There are a number of factors that Government need to consider, these are:
- Fairness - it should operate in a way that is and is seen to be fair and rational
- Predictability - it must be transparent and allow, as far as possible, migrants and their sponsors to submit applications with a reasonable expectation as to the likely outcome
- Selectivity - The policy aims to ensure that the migration system admits those who will bring the most economic benefits but the annual limit means that the numbers of those admitted is constrained and it may be desirable to design the system to deliver a further degree of selectivity
- Operability - The delivery and implementation must be practical, both for those administering the system and the customers that use the system.
the role of the migration advisory committee (MAC)
The Government has asked the MAC to take into account the overall policy objective of reducing net migration and, to take into account the balance between the economic, social and public service impacts of migration.
The consultation will be based on three themes:
- What criteria should be taken into account when recommending a limit for Tiers 1 and 2 and how should these be balanced?
- What precise objective for net migration, and points based migration would be consistent with Government's aim to reduce net migration to the tens of thousands over the lifetime of Parliament?
- What trajectory for Tier 1 and Tier 2 migration over time is most desirable in order to achieve the objective?
The MAC will also be gathering and analysing a range of data sources that will support this consultation that will span 3 broad areas:
- Characteristics and
- Economic, social and public service impacts.
what does this mean for employers?
Some employers state that they do not rely on migrant workers to fill gaps in their workforce and that they can readily fill gaps within their workforce from the resident labour supplies. Broadly speaking, this developing policy would not affect this practice. However, some employers insist that they cannot fill gaps in their workforce from within the EEA and so this developing policy may impact upon their future recruitment practices.
- For employers who currently recruit under Tier 1 - Highly Skilled individuals who contribute to growth and productivity. The recommended limit will apply to the current Tier 1 general route only, including dependants. It will apply to inflows into and from within Tier 1 from within and outside of the UK. It will include in-country migrants switching into and extending under Tier 1.
- For employers who currently recruit under Tier 2 - Skilled workers with a job offer to fill gaps in the UK labour force. The recommended limit for Tier 2 will cover the current Labour Market Test and the Shortage Occupation routes and the Government is consulting on whether these routes should be merged. The Government is also working on the basis that the limit should cover the intra-company transfer route. Dependants of main migrants through these routes will be covered. As with Tier 1, both out-of-country migrants and in-country switchers and extenders are in-scope.
Employers using these routes are strongly advised to respond to the consultation process.
what is skills for care doing?
Skills for Care has been working alongside the Migration Advisory Committee on a range of past consultation issues relating to migration. In particular the "Shortage Occupation List" which relies on employers and related stakeholders submitting evidence to influence these lists in terms of demonstrating that particular job roles within their sector, are indeed in shortage and that it is sensible to recruit from beyond the EEA. The last review (due to be completed by the Autumn 2010) was suspended due to the election.
During the work with the Migration Advisory Committee, Skills for Care developed a strategy for employer consultation that enabled us to communicate quickly and effectively with a range of employers and associated stakeholders. We are aware that the new plans from Government to shape migration will encourage employer contributions. We are currently in the process of meeting with key stakeholders to discuss this latest consultation and to ascertain what role they would like Skills for Care to take in supporting them to submit or analyse evidence that may inform this process.
Skills for Care has recently adapted the National Minimum Data Set for Social Care (NMDS-SC) to capture migrant status and we would anticipate that, in due course, this will be able to provide more accurate data on people employed within the sector from both within and outside of the EEA.
Further updates will be circulated as appropriate or you can contact Annette Baines at Skills for Care:
Skills for Care
6 Grace Street
telephone 07866 740 642