Government ‘aware’ of dubious care agency reports

Government 'aware' of dubious care agency reports
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According to sources, Downing Street is “aware” of concerns that care agencies would try to take advantage of the new visa regulations for foreign workers that go into effect today (Monday).

Following criticism that the sector will struggle to fill job posts if there is a decline in the number of personnel coming from overseas, Number 10 announced that the Home Office will be “closely monitoring” how the new restrictions influence the British care sector.

From March 11 health workers were restricted from bringing family to the UK and care providers must register with the Care Quality Commission (CQC) if they are sponsoring migrant workers in the UK.

But there are concerns about suspected fake companies sponsoring visas after hundreds of licences were reportedly granted to firms that are just a few months old and have no history of providing care.

More than 250 businesses who have never been inspected by the CQC are also believed to have been granted licences to sponsor workers from abroad.

“The measures that are being brought in today ensure that care providers sponsoring migrant care workers must register,” the Prime Minister’s official spokesman said on Monday.

“We’re aware of these reports and that is why we’re cracking down on worker exploitation in the sector and abuse and non compliance of visas.”

He added: “The Home Office will be monitoring the measures. From today care workers can no longer bring dependents with them and the government has been clear that immigration is not the long term answer for social care needs. Care providers should hire more British workers.

“As well as those changes, the changes to ensure that sponsoring migrant care workers register with the Care Quality Commission will help crackdown on worker exploitation.”

A record number of foreign health and care workers were issued UK visas last year, government figures reveal.

Some 146,477 applicants were granted permission to come on health visas in 2023, but when dependants were taken into account the figure rose to 349,929.

New, higher wage thresholds for skilled workers are set to come into force next month.

The government hopes the new visa rules will bring down record levels of immigration to Britain.

But concerns have been raised about the impact the crackdown will have on businesses, particularly those in the care and hospitality industries.

The policy has been slammed by opposition politicians, including Sadiq Khan.

The Mayor said the proposals will “further undermine this critical sector and place the already-stretched NHS and social care system under even more pressure.”

Imperial Hospital Sylhet

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Dulal Ahmed Chowdhury

Dulal Ahmed Chowdhury is the Editor of The Daily Dazzling Dawn. Previously, he has been serving in important positions in all the famous national dailies of the Bangladesh since the nineties. He has played a commendable role in journalism by participating in various events at the national and international levels. United Nations Conference, World Climate Conference, SAARC Summit are notable among them.

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