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Potential Impact of the Immigration Bill on NHS and Social Care Sector

Members will be aware that the Alliance and Later Life Ambitions have been very concerned about the impact that the Immigration Bill might have on the crucial work of social care and the NHS. We will continue to lobby hard for adequate provision to be made in these sectors.

The Government’s controversial Immigration Bill passed its second reading stage in the House of Commons, despite claims it will alienate key workers who have risked their lives during the coronavirus pandemic. The bill passed by 351 votes to 252 and if it passes through both Houses of Parliament and receives royal assent, it will repeal EU freedom of movement, and also introduce a new framework, which has yet to be detailed.

The Shadow Home Secretary, Nick Thomas-Symonds, criticised: https://protect-eu.mimecast.com/s/BmwDCKQ9HqBqGuvosbj
the Government for closing the door to low-skilled immigration while cheering NHS workers. In a letter to Home Secretary Priti Patel, Thomas- Symonds said, “It is, frankly, rank hypocrisy from the Government towards EU nationals – over 180,000 in England and Wales alone – who are currently working in our NHS and in the care sector, for ministers to stand and clap for them on a Thursday night, and then tell them that they are not welcome in the UK on a Monday.” Former immigration minister Caroline Nokes called for an extension of visas for care staff, and warned that without a phased introduction the bill risks staff shortages across crucial sectors.

Regards

Lisa Ray
General Secretary