The idea of a salary threshold is based on a misguided belief that earnings equate to skills

28 January 2020

The Migration Advisory Committee, which advises the government on immigration policy, has today published a report setting out its recommendations for the immigration regime post Brexit.

Sue Ferns, Prospect’s senior deputy general secretary, responding to the report, said:

“For far too long the debate about immigration in the UK has been driven by dogma, myth, and the desire to win elections rather than by solid evidence and reasoned analysis, and we welcome a serious discussion on this vital issue.

“It is unfortunate that the Migration Advisory Committee’s remit has been limited by government to examine the benefits of an Australian Points Based system, rather than a more holistic assessment of the best migration system for the UK. This has led to a situation where the MAC recommends a system that prioritises certain outcomes, for example pressure on schools, above others such as those on social care.

“Prospect welcomes the MAC’s recommendations around the Tier 1 system and the reduction of the salary threshold. But we continue to believe that the idea of a threshold is based on a misguided belief that people who earn more are necessarily more highly skilled or make a greater contribution to society. Under the proposed threshold vital roles like laboratory and pharmaceuticals technicians would not be covered.

“The Government should reject this myth and prove its One Nation credentials by listening to businesses and trade unions across the UK and dropping the salary threshold altogether.”