Recently the government has announced some new restrictions to cut the net immigration to the UK.
The following two announcements by the Home Secretary are devastating for the Individuals as well as the families.
(a) The salary requirements for a skilled foreign worker visa are to increase from £26,200 to £38,700.
(b) The minimum requirement for bringing a Spouse or Partner to the UK will increase from £18,600 to £38,000.
In my opinion as an Immigration Practitioner, if these new changes are implemented. It will have a devastating effect on families and children. It will cause the separation of thousands of couples, children and parents.
In addition to that banning Health and Care workers from bringing their dependent families to the UK is going to affect our already crumbling Health Services.
The UK already have the second-most restrictive Family Immigration regime in Europe, if not in the world.
In 2012 this rule of minimum income was introduced at £18,600 per annum to bring the spouse to the UK. Even at that time, this requirement was above the Income of 47% of the UK’s adult population.
The women, young couples and all ‘Ethnic’ groups were hard-hit by these changes.
The divide between North and South in the income in England also created discrimination as well.
It was estimated in 2015 that 15000 children were affected because the family couldn’t meet the requirements for reunification in Britain. Foreign parents remained stuck overseas, with or without children.
These changes have come at bad timing as we all know that the cost of living in the UK has skyrocketed but there has been no substantial increase in salaries or wages.
Moreover, to meet the new threshold of income for those people who have new jobs or recent salary increases is difficult because the minimum requirement is proof of earning for the last six months.
The alternative route of saving is more mind-boggling.
For young people to show cash savings of £62,500 is either a joke or a deliberate policy to deny people to choose Spouses or Partners of their choice.
Under Human Rights articles, it is a violation of Human Rights to keep Husband and wife and children separate.
In February 2023 the House of Lords’ enquiry criticized the family migration system of the Home Office. It was declared that ‘the system is at odds with the government commitment to family life ‘
This inquiry committee recommended, making the Income requirement more flexible and advised against any increase.
The government’s new steps are the opposite of these recommendations.
According to one study, many relationships are formed at the age of 22-29.
Most of the occupations and even the professionals in that age bracket are not earning £38,000 to meet these requirements.
This type of increase makes little sense to people, who are unable to work full-time because of childcare or other responsibilities.
In multi-cultural, multi-faith and multi-national Britain, one cannot force people to marry only in Britain.
In the year to September 2023,
65,278 people obtained a visa to join a British spouse or partner. This is a quite high number and all these people cannot be ignored by a unilateral decision of the Home Secretary without any consultation with various watchdog agencies of Immigration.
The Goalpost has been moved not just marginally but beyond most people’s earning capacity.
This is a ‘Financial Injustice’ because, under the new policy, only the rich people can bring their spouses and partners.
In my opinion, the political consequences are going to be quite serious in various communities and the Immigrant population of this country, which includes the Prime Minister and the Home Secretary.
A lot of people are not aware of these new Draconian family migration rules.
Most of the people who are going to be affected by these changes would be British citizens and Settled (ILR) people.
Rwanda’s policy to send asylum-seekers has failed so far and this policy is also not workable and practical.
The British government has given 290 million Pounds to the Rwanda government to take asylum seekers but in the last two years only 3 people have been sent to Rwanda and they were all Home Secretaries (Ironically all these home secretaries are children of Immigrants)
As the Elections are on the horizon,
Any approach to your local MP is going to be very effective.
We have to understand that it is a matter of NOW or NEVER.
This analysis on immigration changes is authored by Dost Malik, contributing valuable insights