New Conservatives call for cut in foreign healthcare workers in bid to ‘save face’ on immigration

A gaggle of Tory MPs is piling strain on Rishi Sunak to scale back immigration to the UK – together with an enormous cut to the variety of well being and social care workers.

The so-called New Conservatives need the prime minister to cut web migration from 606,000 final yr to under 226,000 by the following election. The group, which incorporates Tory deputy chairman Lee Anderson, mentioned the social gathering wants to “save face”, having promised a discount in the online migration determine on the final normal election.

To take action, the New Conservatives have referred to as for Mr Sunak to shut a scheme which makes “care workers” and “senior care workers” eligible for Visas, regardless of the sector grappling with 165,000 unfilled vacancies in the final yr.

Presently, well being and social care workers are eligible to come and work in the UK underneath the Well being and Care Employee visa.

Backbench MP Miriam Cates, co-chair of the group, mentioned closing the scheme would scale back the variety of care workers coming to Britain by “about 100,000”.

She informed the BBC it was a “non permanent scheme” introduced in in the course of the pandemic and curbing the provision of foreign workers was wanted “to make care work a horny profession for British individuals”.

“We’re not going to make it a horny profession, we aren’t going to increase wages, if there may be this route for employers to deliver in individuals from overseas,” Ms Cates mentioned.

Miriam Cates, Conservative MP for Penistone and Stocksbridge, mentioned fewer care workers had been wanted to ‘make it a horny profession’ for British individuals

(PA Media)

The New Conservatives, made up of 25 Tory MPs elected for the reason that Brexit referendum, mentioned “swift motion” is required for the Conservatives to “preserve our phrase” on immigration.

“There’s restricted time in which to meet our guarantees,” a report launched on Monday warns.

Plans to curb the variety of well being and social care workers eligible for visas are a part of a 12-point programme designed to deliver down web migration.

The group can also be calling for a cap of 20,000 on the variety of refugees for resettlement and for pupil visas to be “reserved for the brightest” by making poor-performing universities ineligible.

In making the call, the report argues that immigration coverage “shouldn’t be used to prop up the funds of underperforming universities”.

The report is being launched on Monday by Mr Anderson and different Tory MPs.

The report mentioned: “In 2019, we received our greatest majority in 30 years. One of many key guarantees that helped ship that majority was that there can be ‘fewer lower-skilled migrants and general numbers will come down’.

“It’s time for us to preserve our phrase on lowering immigration and regain the belief of the British individuals.”

It’s the newest signal of backbench strain on the prime minister to curb immigration forward of the following normal election, anticipated earlier than January 2025.

The Authorities earlier this yr introduced plans to stop some abroad college students bringing dependents to the UK.

House Secretary Suella Braverman has been outspoken about her want to deliver immigration numbers down, however different members of Mr Sunak’s Cupboard are believed to be extra relaxed concerning the concern.

Mr Hunt performed down any suggestion that the report represented a problem to the Prime Minister, telling BBC Radio 4’s Westminster Hour: “This can be a constructive doc. We’ve lastly obtained again management of our immigration system.

“We’ve ended EU free motion. I feel it’s wholesome to have a stage of debate throughout the parliamentary social gathering about the way forward for our immigration coverage and we’re absolutely supportive of the Prime Minister.”

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