Proposed Government immigration rules could spell staffing crises across UK Up to 100,000 workers harder to recruit for NHS and social care - People's Vote

Proposed Government immigration rules could spell staffing crises across UK Up to 100,000 workers harder to recruit for NHS and social care

New UK immigration rules proposed by the Government would make it harder for Britain’s employers to hire at least 700,000 positions currently held by EU citizens across UK work places.

The salary threshold favoured by Government officials would mean new recruitment hurdles and costs when hiring for jobs currently held by:

  • 100,000 EU health and social care workers
  • 70,000 EU nationals working in the UK education system
  • 110,000 EU citizens employed in the food and accommodation sector
  • 100,000 EU workers on UK manufacturing sites; and
  • 130,000 EU nationals working in wholesale and retail trade in Britain. 

 

The proposed new rules would mark unprecedented disruption for UK firms’ ability to attract the brightest and best to come work here, damage growth and productivity, and weaken the skills base.

Under current EU free movement rules, recruitment is quick and easy with minimal bureaucracy – allowing industry to find the skills and talent they need to ensure Britain’s economy grows and prospers.

This vital aspect of Britain’s participation in the EU Single Market, the world’s largest single economic bloc, has long been valued and praised by British employers and has been a huge success for our economy.

 

Commenting, Luciana Berger MP, leading supporter of the People’s Vote campaign, said:

“These figures show the real impact that the Government’s proposal to end free movement will have on vital sectors like the health service and education.

“To boost the British economy the Government should make it easier, not harder, for businesses in this country to recruit the skills and talent they need. These proposals are a step in the wrong direction.

“This is further proof that Brexit obstructs the future success of UK companies. Ending free movement is a step in the wrong direction, and the economic shock to businesses will leave us all worse off. Nobody voted for that, which is why we need a People’s Vote.”

/ends

 

Notes to editors

Today’s Government white paper on immigration proposes there should be a salary threshold of £30,000 to define a worker as high-skilled, thereby fast-tracking their immigration process. This means in the future employers will have face additional hurdles and costs to hire EU nationals on salaries below £30,000.

“The analysis also assumes that a £30,000 threshold is applied to all occupations.” (Home Office, 19 December 2018, link)

 

The Government white paper recognises that migrants have a positive impact on public services.

“Migrants were found to have a positive impact on health and social care, through their provision of labour in these sectors, and their relatively limited use.” (Home Office, 19 December 2018, link)

 

The Government white paper recognises that EEA migrants have a positive fiscal benefit.

“As EEA migrants are often young with few dependants they tend to consume less in terms of public services and have a lower fiscal cost/greater fiscal benefit than the resident overall migrant population.” (Home Office, 19 December 2018, link)

The Government white paper further recognises that the proposed measures will have a negative impact on GDP and the public finances.

“An increase in long-term non-EEA workers earning over £30,000 could help mitigate some of the estimated GDP and fiscal costs associated with a reduction in long-term EEA workers through the skilled route.” (Home Office, 19 December 2018, link)

 

Indicative number of EU nationals working on annual salaries below £30,000 by industry and age group

Note on methodology: These figures were arrived at by taking the latest ONS statistics on how many people in each industry receive salaries below £30,000 and applying the percentage of EU nationals working in each industry, again using the latest figures available from the ONS. The results below give an indication of how many EU nationals will be employed on salaries below £30,000 for each industry. However, these figures do not include seasonal and agency workers as well as posted workers who are formally employed by companies in other EU member states. This is especially significant in sectors  such as agriculture, forestry and fishing, accommodation and food service activities, and construction.

Sector

18-21

22-29

30-39

40-49

50-59

60+

ALL

Agriculture, forestry and fishing

-

926

817

872

926

763

4,303

Mining and quarrying

-

-

60

60

120

-

239

Manufacturing

4,184

20,022

19,923

22,911

24,704

13,647

105,391

Electricity, gas, steam and air conditioning supply

-

239

449

329

120

90

1,226

Water supply; sewerage, waste management

-

-

838

898

958

359

3,053

Construction

2,199

6,230

5,717

5,717

5,424

2,345

27,632

Wholesale and retail trade; repair of motor vehicles

11,479

26,073

30,169

25,670

28,900

15,979

138,269

Transportation and storage

-

5,917

6,977

9,009

9,980

6,182

38,066

Accommodation and food service activities

19,380

27,157

23,842

18,870

18,487

8,287

116,023

Information and communication

828

3,431

4,496

3,431

2,011

828

15,025

Financial and insurance activities

-

3,502

4,588

3,562

2,717

785

15,153

Real estate activities

-

-

556

575

920

498

2,549

Professional, scientific and technical

1,277

9,041

6,845

5,414

6,129

3,780

32,486

Administrative and support service activities

3,643

14,472

15,949

14,669

15,752

9,254

73,738

Public administration and defence, social security

190

1,218

2,246

2,113

2,437

1,314

9,518

Education

1,448

10,139

12,374

14,526

22,223

10,139

70,849

Human health and social work activities

2,590

15,319

22,825

22,737

24,010

12,246

99,726

Arts, entertainment and recreation

1,715

3,722

3,053

2,133

2,593

2,007

15,224

Other service activities

774

2,445

2,689

2,241

2,689

1,467

12,304

Activities of households as employers

-

1,822

-

2,369

2,734

1,640

8,565

TOTAL

789,340

(Office for National Statistics: Number and proportion of people in employment: by country of birth, nationality, occupation and industry, ages 16 and over, 14 July 2016, link / Office for National Statistics: Earnings and hours worked, age group by industry by two-digit SIC: ASHE Table 21, 25 October 2018, link)