Author: Sophia Wolpers
On Tuesday, 5 February, 23 trade bodies came together in solidarity calling for government to keep Britain at #FullStrength through a fair and managed migration system.
The 23 trade bodies represented the breadth of the UK and London economy from farming to finance, healthcare to hospitality and tech to transport. More than 30 MPs, Peers and their staffers made use of the opportunity to find out how important global talent is to these British industries at the Parliamentary drop-in. They included Stuart McDonald immigration spokesperson for the SNP and London MPs Andy Slaughter, Stephen Hammond and Rupa Huq.
Afzal Khan MP, Labour’s Shadow Immigration Minister took the time to talk to almost all of the exhibitors to better understand what was most pressing in regards to a functioning immigration system whether that was for nurses, farmers or retailers.
A common concern of many organisations is the £30,000 salary threshold. With 64% of the UK’s full-time labour force paid less than £30,000, many sectors who currently struggle to access the right skills locally, will be hugely impacted if they are unable to recruit internationally. Sectors like hospitality (90% paid below 30k), health (75%) and construction (52%) will be some of the hardest hit sectors if the Home Offices puts the rules into play for EU citizens as well.
The different industries all had recommendations to overcome these recruitment barriers, from special sector deals, to increasing ease and number of jobs on the shortage occupation list, to simply lowering the threshold.
The event was a great first step in showing a united front from British business groups and providing a sense of urgency on the issue of immigration. More activities and research will follow under the #FullStrength banner in the coming weeks and months. Including our upcoming immigration panel session, 5 March.
Many thanks go to Stephen Timms MP for hosting this informative and successful parliamentary drop-in as well as supporting our actions on keeping Britain at #FullStrength
Read more about London First’s immigration policy work.
- Association of Labour Providers
- British Medical Association
- British Retail Consortium
- City of London Corporation
- Confederation of Passenger Transport UK
- Council of Deans of Health
- English UK
- Federation of Master Builders
- Food and Drink Federation
- Fresh Produce
- London First
- National Care Association
- National Farmers Union
- NHS Employers
- Recruitment and Employment Confederation
- Royal College of Nursing
- Royal Society
- Skills for Care
- UK Hospitality