The Government’s new Immigration Bill to be introduced in this autumn’s Parliament is predicted to introduce a draconian new approach to illegal migration. But it is becoming increasingly evident that businesses large and small are set to pay a heavy price for that clampdown.
Immigration Minister James Brokenshire has publicly blamed British businesses for this August’s announcement of the UK’s highest ever net migration figures.
Speaking in the run up to his forthcoming Immigration Bill, Brokenshire announced that “illegal workers will face the prospect of a prison term, and rogue employers could have their businesses closed, have their licences removed, or face prosecution, if they continue to flout the law”.
Those already in possession of a Tier 2 sponsor licence clearly fall into the category of those who stand to have their licences removed. Reports that such businesses may be forced to close whilst compliance checks are carried out against them is clearly deeply worrying. Such checks are a standard feature of Tier 2 sponsor licence compliance.
The casual suggestion of ‘rogue employers’ alongside the removal of licences is clearly deeply offensive to many hard working and wholly legitimate business men and women, but it also makes clear the extent of the political drive to be seen to be cracking down on the numbers of migrant workers within the UK.
Irrespective of the case for such workers within the UK economy – as declared by such luminaries as Institute of Directors’ director general Simon Walker and restauranteur and TV chef Jamie Oliver – those already in possession of a Tier 2 sponsor licence should anticipate a ratcheting up of the administrative burden and official scrutiny involved in recruiting staff. British businesses stand to pay a heavy price for the Government’s ‘tough’ stance on migration.