latest health care news

20.02.18

UK ‘cannot afford’ to lose EU health and social care workers

The UK cannot afford to lose the EU staff currently working in health and social care, the Cavendish Coalition has warned.

Its comments come in response to the homes affairs committee’s immigration report, which has criticised the “continued uncertainty” over the status of EU nationals.

The committee has concluded that due to delays, and lack of decisions and resources, UK Visas and Immigration (UKVI) will not be able to effectively deliver two EU citizen registration schemes for existing residents and new arrivals by March 2019.

It was hoped that questions would be answered in the pending white paper, but its publication has been further delayed, possibly until the end of this year.

Answers on the government’s plans for existing residents and those that arrive during the transitional period must be provided urgently, the committee has argued.

Cavendish Coalition co-convenor, Nadra Ahmed, said: “This report highlights the huge challenges faced by UK employers in securing their current and future workforce during a period of great uncertainty. 

“The health and social care system remains under intolerable pressure and so we simply cannot afford to lose the talented EU staff we currently employ.

“Faced with shortages of key staff and skills which cannot be met domestically, it’s imperative we do not continue to see fewer colleagues choosing the UK.”

She welcomed December’s confirmation that EU citizens’ rights will be protected following Brexit, but added that now more detail is needed.

“Employers and staff urgently require clarity on the next steps – not just for those who are currently in the UK, but for those who arrive during the transition period and beyond.

“The Cavendish Coalition remains ready and willing to support the government during this critical phase of negotiations,” she concluded.

Chair of the home affairs committee, Yvette Cooper, said: “We need urgent clarity about both registration and border plans for next year so that Parliament can scrutinise them and so that families, employers and officials can plan.”

Commenting on the effect of the uncertainty on EU citizens, she added: “The litany of questions that remain over the status of EU citizens is causing needless anxiety and uncertainty, both for EU citizens and their families and for employers who need to plan. Ministers need to provide urgent answers.”

Top image: LanceB

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