The UK is to close its borders to unskilled workers and those who cannot speak English as part of a fundamental overhaul of immigration laws that will end the era of cheap EU labour in factories, warehouses, hotels and restaurants. But the Home Secretary Priti Patel has stated that there are some 8 million inactive Britons or settled persons in the UK who could do these unskilled jobs.
Announcing its Australian – style points system yesterday, the Government said it is grasping a unique opportunity to take full control of British borders for the first time in decades and eliminate the distortion caused by EU freedom of movement.
It is no secret that the UK immigration system is going through quite a major transition right now and from the 1st of January 2021 this will become more evident as this is the date the Conservative government’s new Australian style points-based immigration system will be rolled out and applied as part of the new post-Brexit immigration strategy.
Top immigration lawyers London confirm that from this date onwards, migrants from the EU and from outside will be treated equally and will have to meet a number of criteria referred to as “points” to gain entry clearance into the UK which include having specific “skills” alongside the ability to speak the English language to a decent level.
Moreover, recent statements on this new and reformed immigration policy from the Home Secretary Pritti Patel have revealed more about how this future system will take form, and low skilled workers will be the first group affected due to these new government plans.
Recent statements regarding low skilled workers
Statements put forward by the Home Secretary in recent days have enforced that the UK government would like to reduce the number of people coming to the UK with low skills where she has stated that employers should start to “move away” from relying on “cheap labour” from Europe and to hire staff from the 8 million economically inactive people who live in the country.
A number of opposing parties have criticised this policy put forward by the Conservatives either stating that this will lead to a “hostile environment” in the UK or that the policy is ridiculous or dangerous, as many of these 8 million people claim to be suffering from ill-health or injury, or are incapable to work.
Who is a skilled worker?
The new plan will change the definition of a “skilled worker” where the term would be stretched to include those who have A-level/Scottish Higher equivalent standard, not just graduate-level qualifications which are currently included under the term in the present immigration rules.
Furthermore, under the new government plans the term would no longer cover those who work as waiters or farmworkers but will extend to include carpenters, plasterers and childminders.
How many points do you need under the new plan?
The new system would need an overseas citizen to reach a minimum of 70 points to work in the UK after the 31st of December 2020 which is the official date free movement ends for EU citizens who want to come to the UK.
As stated earlier in this article, after this date, EU citizens will be treated the same under UK immigration rules and points will be given to individuals based on them meeting certain criteria and a number of these are mandatory.
-0 points will be awarded if a job’s salary ranges from £20,480 to £23,039
-10 points will be awarded if a migrant speaks English (mandatory)
-10 points will be awarded if a UK visa applicant has a PhD degree
-10 points will be awarded if a job’s salary is between £23,040 and £25,599
-20 points will be awarded if the job has the proper skill level (mandatory)
-20 points will be awarded if an individual has a job, offer or sponsor (mandatory)
-20 points will be awarded if the salary for a job is over £25,600
-20 points will be awarded for a job that’s on the shortage occupation list
-20 points will be awarded if an individual’s PhD degree is in science, technology, maths or engineering
Minimum Salary Thresholds under the New Plan
In addition to having enough points to apply under the new system applicants will also be required to have a job offer that ranges between £25,600 to £33,300 which will gain you 20 points. However, salary requirements are lower for certain job categories with critical shortages, such as nursing.