17 December 2010
A temporary cap on the number of skilled workers from outside the EU allowed into the UK was introduced “unlawfully”, the High Court has ruled.
Home Secretary Theresa May introduced the cap this summer as an interim measure ahead of a permanent cap.
But a legal challenge to it was upheld with judges ruling that ministers had “sidestepped” Parliamentary scrutiny.
The Home Office said this did not imperil its flagship immigration policy but Labour said it was in “chaos”.
The BBC’s Home Affairs Correspondent Danny Shaw said the ruling was an embarrassment and a setback for the coalition but was not a fatal blow to its plan for a permanent cap on non-EU migration.
The ruling has nullified the current temporary cap, meaning it is no longer in force.
But ministers can introduce a new cap when Parliament returns in January. This would come into effect immediately but MPs and peers would be able to challenge it within 40 days, the BBC understands.
Prime Minister David Cameron has said current immigration levels are not sustainable and called for net migration – the difference between the number of people entering the UK and those emigrating – to be reduced from nearly 200,000 a year to “tens of thousands”.
As a first step, ministers introduced a temporary cap for non-EU skilled workers of 24,100 a month in June, in line with a Conservative election commitment.
But the measure was challenged by the Joint Council for the Welfare of Immigrants (JCWI) and English Community Care Association, which was concerned over the position of immigrant care workers.
In Friday’s ruling, Lord Justice Sullivan and Mr Justice Burton concluded that the home secretary had not gone through the proper parliamentary procedures before implementing the cap – which took effect without a vote in Parliament.
“The secretary of state made no secret of her intentions,” they stated. “There can be no doubt that she was attempting to side-step provisions for Parliamentary scrutiny set up under provisions of the 1971 Immigration Act and her attempt was for that reason unlawful.”
As a result, it said no lawful limits were now in place for two tiers of job applicants from abroad.
The English Community Care Association said the temporary cap – which reduced by 5% the number of non-EU work visas issued – could have a potentially “catastrophic” effect on the care sector.
As 13% of those who work in care homes come from outside Europe, it said thousands of staff from the Philippines, India and South Africa could be forced to quit their jobs and this could damage continuity of care.
‘Not thought through’
Vacancies created would not be filled by British staff, it said, as there was not sufficient demand for the jobs.
It argued the cap had been introduced with “complete disregard” for care providers and their staffing needs.
In response, the Home Office said it was still “firmly committed” to reducing levels of net migration.
“I am disappointed with today’s verdict,” Immigration minister Damian Green said, stressing ministers would launch an appeal if “there were grounds” to do so.
“We will do all in our power to continue to prevent a rush of applications before our more permanent measures are in place,” he added.
But Shadow Home Secretary Ed Balls, for Labour, said the policy “may have sounded good before the election but it wasn’t properly thought through and didn’t get the scrutiny it deserved”.
He added: “David Cameron’s flagship election promise to bring net migration down to the tens of thousands has now been watered down from a firm pledge to just an aim.”
The level at which the permanent cap will be set has been a source of tension within government, with Lib Dem ministers calling for the regime to be flexible as possible so as not to prevent firms from being able to recruit highly skilled labour.
December 17, 2010
Kanlungan (The Alliance of Filipino Organisations) and Campaign for Human Rights in the Philippines are proud to present –
4th December 2010 at 7:30pm
Praxis Hall, Pott Street, Bethnal Green London E2 0EF (map)
(Filmshow is followed by dinner and dance to celebrate the early holiday season.)
Tickets at 10GBP inclusive of film, dinner and dance.
For enquiries, contact Kanlungan and/or CHRP.
November 12, 2010
A Public Forum on the Points Based System (Tiers 2 and 4)
If you are in the UK on a student (Tier 4) or work permit visa (Tier 2), you need to be aware and understand the recent changes in immigration law.
Since November 2008, the UK Border Agency have been implementing new policies concerning and affecting your immigration status. As a result, many migrants who are already in the UK to study or work have to satisfy the requirements of the Points Based System. Failure to do so may result to migrants becoming irregular or undocumented.
To shed a light on these issues and develop a community response, Kanlungan will hold a public forum to discuss the following:
1. understanding the Points Based System (Tiers 2 and 4) and its new approaches
2. Employers certificate of sponsorship
3. Where and how to get proper advice
4. What actions we can take
Please join us on this public forum on:
Saturday, 12th June 2010, 2:00-5:00pm
Praxis Training Room
Praxis Community Projects
Pott Street, London, E2 0EF (map here)
Tube: Bethnal Green (Central Line)
Speaker: Steve Symonds, ILPA (Immigration Law Practicioners’ Association)
For enquiries, contact us
June 6, 2010
31 March 2010
Mary Bowers, http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/life_and_style/health/article7081849.ece
Beneath the sash window of a care home in Wimbledon, lit by a shaft of spring sunlight, Lady Cicely Mayhew sits in the leather chair she occupies most days. Now 86, she reminisces about her adventures as the first female British diplomat, and her childhood growing up in Kenya, Tanzania and South Africa. It’s a trip down memory lane made all the more enjoyable by the attentive acknowledgement of Johannesburg-born nurse Irene Mahasela.
March 31, 2010
Photo credit: Rose Eclarinal, ABS-CBN
16 March 2010
Rose Eclarinal, ABS-CBN,http://www.abs-cbnnews.com/pinoy-migration/03/16/10/pinoy-senior-carers-uk-file-judicial-review
LONDON – It is time to extend compassion and care to Filipinos who came to the UK to care for Britain’s elderly. This is just one of the goals of Kanlungan, a non-profit, charitable institution, in taking cudgels for embattled senior carers who were denied Indefinite Leave to Remain (ILR) in the UK.
Thirty-three year old Jenny Labaria was denied the application of ILR because of the 5-month gap in her work permit. She came to the UK as a care worker in 2004.
“(I’m) very stressed actually. Wala kang peace of mind. Financially nadi-drain na. Kasi nagbabayad ka ng fee for the solicitor. Yes, very unjust towards us,” said Labaria.
March 16, 2010
Please see the video output of the successful workshop/seminar by Kanlungan, in cooperation with Sondra Cuban of the University of Lancaster, in October – November 2009, held at Praxis.
Workshop on Deskilling of Health Care Professionals by Kanlungan
February 22, 2010
Vote for Migrants Rights! is a joint project of Kanlungan, Migrante UK and CHRP-UK, that aims to highlight pertinent issues and aspirations of Filipino migrants in the UK and their families that they want to put forward this Philippine election season.
The project aims to gather issues and opinions from different Filipino migrant community organisations and individuals in the UK, in the light of producing a consolidated migrant agenda of the country. A national consultation is planned to take place on 17 April 2009 in London, where selected delegates from different migrant organisations across UK regions will gather to unite on their issues and endorse our own agenda.
To visit the website go to: http://votemigrantsrights.wordpress.com
February 8, 2010
Calling all care workers with gaps in your visa!
When the government changed the work permit requirements for senior care workers in 2007-2008, many care workers lost their right to extend their visa. A campaign was launched by Kanlungan and other organisations against these changes and the Home Office responded by offering concessions to those who needed to extend their work visas.
However, some of you ended up having a “gap” in your visa. The gap is the period between the date when your first visa expired and your new visa (gained as a result of the concession) began. Recently, some of those who gained visa extensions through the concession have applied for indefinite leave to remain since they have worked in the UK for five years. However, we have heard that some of these have been refused because of the “gap” in their visa. (more…)
November 10, 2009
Appeal for Financial Support for Victims of Philippine Typhoon Kestana (aka Ondoy)
Kanlungan would like to thank all donors to the Typhoon Ondoy Relief Fund. We have gathered a total of £798.13 which will be forwarded to Citizens’ Disaster Response Center (CDRC).
For the complete list of donors, click here.
Citizens’ Disaster Response Center (CDRC) is a non-government organization that pioneered and continues to promote community-based disaster management in the Philippines. CDRC operates nationwide through a network of regional centers affiliated with the Citizens’ Disaster Response Network and through people’s organizations.
November 10, 2009
Training: “Advocacy Based Approaches to the Deskilling of Migrant Health Professionals”
Saturday 31st October 11 a.m. – 5.00 p.m.
@ Praxis (community centre) Pott Street, London E2 0EF
Tel: 020 7729 7985
Buses: 8, 106, 254 and 388
Underground: Bethnal Green Station
Are you a former health care professional who feels deskilled and wants a change? This training will help you to gain support and advocacy to move in this direction. Taught by Sondra Cuban, PhD, of Lancaster University, you will start a portfolio of hidden but important skills and knowledge about advancement and advocacy in the UK that aims at collective empowerment for students in social care. The goals are: (more…)
September 23, 2009