A group representing skilled migrants from India and other non-European Union countries has said that Britain’s efforts to tighten immigration should not result in the retrospective application of new laws.
The government recently unveiled a draft bill that seeks to further tighten immigration rules, including the new concept of migrants being granted ‘permission’ to enter or stay in the UK.
Amit Kapadia, Executive Director of the Highly Skilled Migrants Forum, said introducing new laws often resulted in targeting existing migrants who were responsible tax payers and law-abiding residents.
Migrants have to satisfy the requirements of the points-based system before they can enter, work and stay in the UK.
“In view of the current economic climate, there could be instances of migrants losing their jobs and we believe that these circumstances must be taken into consideration when deciding on whether or not they will be ‘permitted’ to continuously live in this country,” Kapadia said.
The new shortage occupation list, he said, would significantly reduce the number of foreign employees, which will affect many existing migrants’.
“It is not justified on the government’s part to exercise its powers of expulsion indiscriminately especially if these migrants were unaware of the changing circumstances when they first made their application,” he added.
“It is our concern that the new draft bill, which intends to introduce the new streamlined power of expulsion, would further abuse human rights laws and would unfairly penalise honest and hardworking migrants just as the Citizenship Act passed in July 2009 will do.”
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