Friday 28 April 2017

East Midlands Strategic Migration Partnership Briefing

East Midlands Strategic Migration Partnership Briefing

The East Midlands Strategic Migration Partnership Briefing brings together different sources of information relating to Asylum Seekers, Refugees and Migrants.


Migration Update (ESOL)

ESOL Learners Hardest Hit by Cuts to the Adult Skills Budget in the East Midlands

On Monday, the Skills Funding Agency (SFA) announced further cuts to the Adult Skills Budget, including the withdrawal of funding from teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL).

letter to the sector details a total of £45 million to be taken out of ESOL Plus Mandation for the 2015-16 funding year.

The cuts will impact colleges in the East Midlands significantly, with colleges losing £2.65 million in funding, affecting around 10,000 learners across the region.

In addition, the SFA have announced further cuts of 3.9% to the Adult Skills Budget on top of the 24% cut on non-Apprenticeship skills announced earlier in the year. This means that Colleges in the East Midlands will lose a further £3.9 million in funding.

However, the letter also reaffirms the government’s commitment to Apprenticeships, promising to fund all Apprenticeship growth requests for 16 -18 year olds in 2015-16.

Universal credit ban for EU migrants

New EU migrants arriving in the UK will be prevented from claiming universal credit. The new regulations mean that no EU households will be entitled to benefits without having worked in the UK first. The Department for Work and Pensions says the move follows action it has already taken to halve the amount of time EU jobseekers can claim other benefits such as jobseeker’s allowance (JSA), child benefit and child tax credit. It also means that if they don’t have a job after three months they will lose their right to reside in the UK. New migrant jobseekers are also now unable to claim housing benefit.

The DWP said: "These tough new rules are part of the government’s long-term economic plan to protect the benefits system and ensure EU migrants come to this country for the right reasons and to contribute to the economy."

But the changes have been greeted with concern in some quarters, including the Social Security Advisory Committee (SSAC).

In a letter to the Work and Pensions Secretary, SSAC Chair Paul Gray said: "The proposed changes...affect not only potential migrants considering whether to come to GB in search of work, but also EEA nationals and their dependents who have already settled and worked in the UK. See also reaction on Concerns raised over universal credit ban for EU migrants » Housing »

Free movement rights of EEA and Swiss nationals

UK Visas and Immigration modernised guidance for how it considers the free movement rights of nationals of the EEA and Swiss nationals, and who can enter and live in the UK under European Community (EC) law. 

Housing Rights Website

I'm writing to let you know about a new development in the housing rights website. I'm pleased to announce that it now covers migrants' rights in the private rented sector. The new pages are particularly relevant given that the government's 'Right to Rent' immigration checks began their pilot phase in the West Midlands at the end of last year, and may be extended further later this year. CIH and BMENational received support from the TDS Foundation to develop the new pages for the site, and the main adviser page can be accessed here. This links both to the less detailed migrants' page, and to more detailed legal background material. All the pages benefited from feedback from advice agencies who commented extensively on the draft material. The new pages currently cover England and Wales, and we plan to develop new pages for Scotland in the very near future. I do hope that you will publicise the new guidance material through your networks and ensure that it is as widely used as possible. As ever, if you have any feedback or suggestions, we are very pleased to have them The new pages are on the housing rights website, here: 

The Migration Advisory Committee (MAC) - report on a partial review of the shortage occupation lists

The MAC, which offers independent, evidence-based advice to the government on migration issues, was commissioned to carry out a partial review of the shortage occupation list. The review focused on graduate jobs in the digital technology and health sectors, and overhead linesworkers in the electricity supply industry. The review recommended the following changes. To be added to the shortage occupation list:

  • Paramedics - the MAC found no other short-term solutions to ease the pressure on the existing workforce;
  • Low voltage overhead linesworkers in the electricity supply industry;
  • Clinical radiology consultants; and non-consultant training roles in paediatrics.
  • Senior jobs in digital technology, limited to people with five years’ or more experience. The jobs to be included are product manager; data scientist; senior developer and cyber security specialist.
  • To be removed from the shortage occupation list:
  • Haematology consultants; non-consultant non-training roles in anaesthetics; and therapeutic radiographers.

GPs and nurses were considered for inclusion, but there was insufficient evidence of need.

Migration Advisory Committee (MAC) partial review of the shortage occupation lists - News stories - GOV.UK

Supported Options website – projects which support undocumented children and young people in the UK

The Supported Options Initiative is a special initiative of the Paul Hamlyn Foundation, delivered in partnership with Unbound Philanthropy. It encourages and supports innovation in helping children and young people with irregular immigration status in the UK. The initiative has launched a website to gather and publicise information about all the funded projects and various films, articles and reports. Please follow this link to access the website: About the Supported Options Initiative | Supported Options Initiative

Thanks to the East of England Newsflash 

Migration Policy Institute (MPI) report - Supporting Immigrant Integration in Europe: What Role for Origin Countries' Subnational Authorities?

This MPI Europe report investigates how the activities of origin countries' local institutions may improve the lives of emigrants to Member States of the European Union. It discusses obstacles as well as opportunities for sending-country cities, regional political entities and federated states in the design and implementation of policy measures to improve the trajectories of migrants. The report underscores the importance of international cooperation at the subnational level—such as city-to-city partnerships—focusing on established migration corridors in Europe, assuming that historical links or geographic proximity can make cooperation easier. Please follow this link to read the report in full:

Supporting Immigrant Integration in Europe: What Role for Origin Countries' Subnational Authorities? |

Thanks to the East of England Newsflash

Immigration health surcharge: information for migrants

This document contains information about the immigration health surcharge, which will be introduced on 6 April. The health surcharge means that temporary, non-EEA migrants coming to the UK for more than six months will contribute to the NHS. The health surcharge will be set at £200 a year for temporary migrants and £150 a year for students.

Immigration health surcharge: information for migrants - Publications - GOV.UK 

The Home Office news announcement can be accessed here: Migrant 'health surcharge' to raise £200 million a year - News stories - GOV.UK

Scope of exclusions to adult social care support to be extended when the Care Act 2014 comes into force

The exclusions to social services support will be extended to include assistance to carers, the duty to undertake assessments and the power to meet urgent needs.

The draft Care Act 2014 and Children and Families Act 2014 (Consequential Amendments) Order 2015​​ amend​s current social care legislation and sets​ out the consequential amendments to related legislation, in order to implement the Care Act 2014. Part 1 of the Care Act 2014 will come into force in England in April 2015 but current legislation will continue to apply in Wales. 

The order states that Part 1 of the Care Act 2014 (care and support provided by local authority) will be excluded  under Schedule 3 Nationality Immigration and Asylum Act 2002. This means that specified groups of migrants will not be able to access assistance under Part 1 of the Care Act unless the exercise of a power or performance of a duty is necessary for the purpose of avoiding a breach of a persons rights under the European Convention on Human Rights or European Community Treaties.​​ Affected migrants include EEA nationals and their dependants, visa overstayers and other migrants who are unlawfully present in the UK, including refused asylum seekers who claimed asylum 'in-country'.

For further information follow this link. Care Act Schedule 3

UK Visas and Immigration policy paper - Statement of changes to the Immigration Rules: HC1025 – asylum

The changes set out in paragraphs 220 and 222 to 232 of this statement shall apply to applications and asylum claims decided on or after 27 February 2015. Please follow this link to access the paper in full:

UK Visas and Immigration – updated country information and guidance

This guidance is used by UK Visas and Immigration to make decisions in asylum and human rights applications. Updated guidance is available regarding Afghanistan relating to those who are perceived to support the government or international forces plus an updated operational guidance note. Please follow this link for the two Afghanistan country information documents: Afghanistan: country information and guidance - Publications - GOV.UK

Updated guidance is available regarding Bangladesh relating to opposition to the government. Please follow this link for the Bangladesh country information: Bangladesh: country information and guidance - Publications - GOV.UK

Updated guidance is available regarding Libya relating to minority ethnic groups. Please follow this link for the Libya country information: Libya: country information and guidance - Publications - GOV.UK

Three new guidance documents are available regarding Pakistan – one about the Ahmadis, one about Shia Muslims and one about Christians and Christian converts. Pakistan: country information and guidance - Publications - GOV.UK