The Daily Mirror reports that foreign footballers have been let off learning English – despite rules stating overseas workers must speak the language.
Following a Football Association request, they will get a year’s exemption and be allowed to enter Britain as temporary workers under Tier 5 of the points-based immigration system.
This means players will not have to pass language test.
Later they will transfer to Tier 2 when they will be expected to learn English as skilled workers.
The change will affect those signed during the January transfer window, possibly including Manchester City target Kaka, the Brazil star.
Immigration Minister Phil Woolas said Britain must be “open and attractive” for top sports stars.
It’s all very well rolling out the red carpet for the likes of mega rich football clubs like Manchester City, but Mr Woolas and the Home Office are not so lenient with care workers.
Care homes and their staff were not exactly ‘over the moon’ when hundreds of Senior Carers were forced to say ‘adios’ the UK in 2007/8 after the rules were tightened on Work Permits.
Senior Carers, unable to renew Work Permits due to unreasonable restrictions and Government imposed salary levels, were shown the ‘red card’ by an intransient Home Office.
In November he proudly announced that the new points based system would reduce the numbers of non-EU workers by 200,000.
The Government are now set to turn ‘put the boot in’ on overseas students and the colleges which recruit them with tough new rules and penalties.
Already, many Indian and Chinese students are being refused entry clearance for NVQ courses on the grounds that they do not possess an IELTS (International English Language Testing System) pass, even though this is not a requirement for a vocational qualification, or indeed a student visa.
In March Tier 4 of the points system will be launched just eight months after the sponsors register opened last July.
Among other measures, students who are refused a UK visa will lose the right of appeal and will no longer be able to have their case heard before an independent Immigration Judge at the Asylum and Immigration Tribunal (AIT).
As they say, it’s a funny old game.