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Warning of Points-based Immigration System

Following warnings from the Migration Advisory Committee about the possible impact of new immigration proposals on low-paid workers, which would include those working in social care, Independent Age, the older people’s charity, has issued a response.

On Tuesday 28th January, the Migration Advisory Committee released a report outlining its recommendations following a request from the Home Secretary to consider how a points-based system immigration system could be introduced in the UK to strengthen the UK labour market.

In summary, the report criticised a full shift to an Australian-style points-based system, instead recommending a mixed system. This would rely on a minimum salary threshold for those people coming to the UK with a job offer, and a points-based system for skilled workers coming to the UK without an arranged job.
Deborah Alsina MBE, Chief Executive of Independent Age, said: “The social care sector is already under immense pressure, and heavily reliant on workers from overseas.  Anything that creates a further barrier to recruiting and retaining that workforce will only make that worse.

“We urgently need the Government to develop and implement a comprehensive workforce strategy for social care, to ensure we can deliver a social care system fit for purpose in the future. This must be developed in tandem with the workforce strategy for the NHS.

“The Chair of the Migration Advisory Committee has said that some difficult trade-offs are unavoidable, but it’s essential that social care providers are given assurances that any new system does not come at the cost of poorer care for the older people and families who currently depend on it.

“We want to see any new immigration system include a route for those workers from overseas to avoid creating additional strain across our stretched NHS and care systems.”

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