ADULT SOCIAL CARE CRISIS : Staff shortages - 29/10/21 DEADLINE MAC CALL FOR EVIDENCE
Author: Nilmini Roelens
The Migration Advisory Committee (MAC) launched a call for evidence to stakeholders in July 2021 as to the consequences of the end of free movement on Adult Social Care provision. Employers, Representative Organisations and Individuals are invited to respond by 29.10.21 using online questionnaires which can be found at the link below.
A study commissioned by the MAC as a comprehensive review of international immigration routes for adult social care workers across the OECD, conducted by Maria Vincenza Desiderio will inform the MAC's review:
Desiderio reports on the UK as follows: "Since March 2021 senior care workers and care managers are among the occupations included in the SOL and, which facilitates their international recruitment though the Skilled Worker route. However, the SOL salary threshold of £20,480 is still higher than what most senior care workers in the UK earn, as the median full-time pay in the occupation is about £20,170. 93.
Added to this are demanding sponsorship requirements on employers to qualify as approved sponsors under the UK’s Immigration system. All in all, these conditions make this route de facto impracticable for individuals and families with care needs. For the same reasons, extensive recourse to this route to secure the workforce needs of the care industry is also unlikely. On the positive side, the immigration costs for senior care workers, care managers and nursing assistants (all RQF 3-4 SOL occupations) are lower than for other occupational groups. All SOL applicants benefit from lower visa application fees.
These are further reduced for Health and Care Workers as part of the new preferential package offered to them under the Health and Care worker route – which is nothing else than a re-branding of the previous NHS visa now within the Skilled Worker route...
Application fees for Health and Care workers range from £232 for a three-year visa (compared to a general rate of £610) and £464 for a five-year visa (compared to a general rate of £1,220).
Moreover, Health and Care worker visa applicants are exempt from the onerous Immigration Health Surcharge (I H S), currently set at £624 per year and payable at the application phase."
Desiderio suggests an alternative by extension of the Youth Mobility scheme to EEA countries as a possible "game changer" since the "rising dynamic of EEA participation in the UK care sector made this group a non-negligible contributor to securing adequate care workforce in an aging society".
Stakeholders should make use of this opportunity to be heard by responding to the MAC's call for evidence by 29.10.2021 using the forms at this link: