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UK Tightens Visa Policies – Big Impact on Workers and Students

Today’s blog update talks about UK tightening visa policies forcing workers seek job opportunities or risk deportation within 60 days. So do read the full blog and share it with your friends and family on Facebook, Whatsapp and X (formerly known as twitter).

Significant Drop in Healthcare Visa Applications

The UK government’s recent tightening of visa policies has resulted in a significant drop in healthcare visa applications and family dependents. According to the latest Home Office statistics, there has been a 76% decrease in overseas workers applying for jobs in the UK’s care sector and a 58% drop in family dependents under the Health and Care visa category, compared to April 2023. Indian nationals, who topped the Health and Care visa grants last year, are now facing the brunt of these changes.

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Challenges for UK Care Workers

Many Indian care workers find themselves stranded in the UK due to the new regulations. The National Council of Gujarati Organisations (NCGO) UK reports that these workers, many from Gujarat, borrowed significant sums to obtain visas and now face deportation. Dubious recruitment agencies, often unchecked for their legitimacy, have exacerbated their plight.

Kanti Nagda of the NCGO UK highlighted that many agencies operate from temporary locations and were given quotas without proper verification. The affected workers are now scrambling to find job opportunities within their restricted work permits or risk deportation within 60 days, which poses significant challenges for families with children.

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Changes on Student Visas & Potential Further Restrictions on Graduate Route Visa

The UK government’s changes also affect student visas, leading to a 12% drop in applications. Universities and diaspora groups have warned that further restrictions on the post-study Graduate Route visa could dramatically reduce applications from Indian students, who currently form the largest group of international students in the UK.

Care Worker Visa Abuse

The Home Office acknowledges evidence that some care workers were offered visas under false pretences, resulting in them traveling for non-existent jobs or being paid below the required minimum wage. An affected worker from Rajkot, now in Leicester, has reported his agency to Action Fraud and is seeking justice from the UK government.

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David Cameron Opposes Changes to Graduate Route Visa

UK Foreign Secretary David Cameron is among the Cabinet ministers opposing changes to the Graduate Route visa, emphasizing the importance of maintaining the UK’s appeal to international students. He reiterated that the UK offers a clear path for students with English language qualifications and university places, with no limits on numbers.

As the UK continues to tighten visa policies, the impacts on international workers and students are becoming increasingly evident. The government’s approach aims to control immigration while maintaining fairness and opportunities for genuine applicants.

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