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Should there be a cap on skilled workers?

10:08 UK time, Monday, 28 June 2010

A temporary limit on the number of non-EU migrants allowed into the UK has been announced by the home secretary. Should skilled worker numbers be limited?

Theresa May says she will limit worker numbers to 24,100 - down around 5% on last year - between now and April 2011. The government says these measures will eventually bring net migration down to the levels of the 1990s.

Business Secretary Vince Cable defends the cap but says it must be implemented flexibly, while Shadow Home Secretary Alan Johnson says it is a pointless "gimmick".

Ms May told the BBC Radio 4's Today programme there was "clear agreement" in the coalition government that a permanent cap would be set next April, but the temporary limit was needed to prevent a "rush of applications" before then.

Do you think the limitations are too tough? Is a permanent cap a good idea? Are you a business worried about losing skilled workers?

This debate is now closed. Thank you for your comments.

Comments

Page 1 of 10

  • Comment number 1.

    As far as I'm concerned, people should be free to choose where they want to work and not oppressed by a government.

  • Comment number 2.

    Should there be a cap on skilled workers?

    Depends what you mean by skilled - some of the most vital work done by imigrants in the uk - such as live-in care work and some of the more 'menial' NHS coul be described as 'unskilled' but these are the jobs which British people themselves won't take.

    Both the NHS & Residential Care services are absoltely depnded on non-EU immigrants.

    PS a prize for the first outraged contributor to demand that the cap should NONE!!!! as this country is full!!!!

  • Comment number 3.

    A cap on Non Eu Immigration would be helpfull, but as the wife of a construction worker know that the big problem is Eu Immigrants. Alot of the large building projects are soley foreign labour. The last 5 years have been hell for us and we are thousands of pounds down every year. I have just had to change my mortgage to interest only from repayment to gain the extra £100 it will give us each month as my husband is yet again out of work !

  • Comment number 4.

    The Tory plan seems to envisage a net inward move of tens of thousands of immigrants. That’s unacceptable and unnecessary , there is insufficient housing in the UK – so the last thing we need is more immigrants coming in. In the small number of cases – where Highly skilled migrants are required it should be easy enough to balance those workers arriving with the number of people leaving the country. Why then do the Tories plan an immigration policy which will increase the net number of immigrants coming into the country? It seems to me that you the Government is bring dangerously negligent in bringing in more immigrants when the country is full up already.


    The solution

    Balance inward immigration with emigration, so net movement is 0 and very preferably a minus figure.

    Deport All illegal Immigrants in the country

    Deport all bogus asylum seekers

    Foreign students to leave country once they qualify – the best qualified allowed to stay

    Fake marriages to be stopped

    New Laws to be passed ( by leaving EU if necessary) making those who support and promote net inwards immigration to be liable for all the problems caused by immigration.

  • Comment number 5.

    A temporary and then a permanent cap is required. We need to provide jobs, education, and health for the current population and we have enough people in this country.

  • Comment number 6.

    Absolutely - what a brilliant idea, why didn't the government think of this before? Oh yes, I forgot we had years of labour mis-management. The best thing Alan Johnson can do is keep quiet.

  • Comment number 7.

    Makes sense to impose as tough limits as possible. The country needs fewer people, not more, and encouraging immigration is simply short-term thinking. It's just a pity that we can't go further by dumping a good chunk of the more useless parts of our population somewhere else but understandably no-one else would want them.

  • Comment number 8.

    No. We should have the same system as in the USA.

    Green cards for those with skills that are needed and not available from the existing resident potential workforce.

  • Comment number 9.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 10.

    It is sensible to manage the number of skilled workers coming in but really these are not the main problem. It is the huge number of illegal entrants and dubious "asylum seekers" who are the real problem. These uncontrolled groups are puuting a strain on welfare resources and some no doubt get involved in the black economy, crime, and perhaps benefit fraud. It is these groups which need attention. Skilled workers such as medical staff, technicians,engineers are able to come and compete for jobs with our own professionals and will presumably be hired if they are the best for the job. By all means monitor these groups but do not forget it is the bogus and illegal entrants, and "students" who overstay their visas who need to be controlled.

  • Comment number 11.

    I don't see any point in a flexible limit on skilled workers. Either we have a limit, or we are flexible, you can't do both.

    Personally, I don't see why this country cannot train its skilled workers. I believe that when an empoloyer says they can't find a skilled worker, they actually mean they can't find a cheap skilled worker and they can't or won't train someone.

    Bringing in skilled workers not only undermines the prospects for local workers, it also undermines skills training in this country.

  • Comment number 12.

    There should be a cap on skilled workers and an increase in skills training for the out of work to fill these places.

  • Comment number 13.

    I just can't see why we need to bring thousands of skilled workers in, to do what? We should shut the door on all immigration whether EU or not, the countries full, local services in some parts have gone beyond breaking point. Why can't we retrain people who have been made redundant? The problem is there are two many companies that see foreign workers as easy to manipulate when it comes to pay. I think the so called skilled jobs are little more than semi-skilled, they can be filled with little more than 20 hours training.

  • Comment number 14.

    Three cheers for Ms. May.

    At last some common sense has entered the immigration saga.

    Whether or not we, the public, are justified in believing that immigration has caused more problems than it has solved I am sure the setting of a lower limit will be welcomed accross the country.

    However, what really bothers a lot of people is our inability to limit EU migrants. Do we really have to take in whoever comes to our shores just because the EU says so? Along with it's 'bent banana's' legislation this organisation seems hell bent on making our lives a misery with its interference.

    What is the point of electing our own government when really it is the European Union who makes so many of the decisions that affect us the most?

  • Comment number 15.



    Outside EU immigration isn't the problem, it's INSIDE the EU thats the elephant in the room!

  • Comment number 16.

    Yes there is a need for preventing unregulated immigration from outside the European Union. As usual we'll have the CBI on whining about how they can't get the skilled labour. If you can't find the right person out of the hundreds of millions that live in Europe maybe they're not paying enough. Better still why not train someone to do these mysteriously highly skilled jobs that no one in Europe can do.
    Another sore point in immigration is arranged marraiges. They must be stopped. They should not be legal in a modern civilised nation.

  • Comment number 17.

    There has been uncontrolled immigration for years under Labour. Of course this is a sensible measure as it will be flexible enough to allow those whose skills are sought in the UK to enter.

  • Comment number 18.

    This country cannot take anymore immigrants, this is half the trouble why the country is in the state it is!!!
    We need to look after the people who were born here.

  • Comment number 19.

    *GRRR* *SNARL* *IMMIGRANTS RUIN EVERYTHING* *RRAAAARGLE*

    That an accurate summation of the comments so far?

    Not entirely sure what capping the arrival of skilled workers from across the world will achieve other than give more ammo to useless, sponging whingers wasting their benefit money and bemoaning how someone has taken 'their job' as though employment is some kind of effort-free guaranteed birthright.

    I, as a skilled, trained professional, want the right to ply my trade anywhere in the world according to where opportunities arise. I can hardly legitimately deny any other worker the right to the same in the UK.

    If you've got a trade, a job and a work ethic then you should be welcomed with open arms in any modern society.

  • Comment number 20.

    No, because then our football teams wouldn't be worth anything...

  • Comment number 21.

    I'm happy to sit on the fence on this and see how it pans out in reality.
    Will Ministers change their mind if we get cases where they cant fill vital jobs?

  • Comment number 22.

    I just love how now they are out of government, Labour just wash their hands of everything they have done for the last 13 years and take no responsibility for it at all.

    Non-eu immigration is just a 'gimmick' they say because the majority of migrants come from within the EU - yeah, thanks to you not giving us the referendum you promised us!!

    Darling commenting on the economy when he helped to wreck it!
    dear oh dear

  • Comment number 23.

    Its not the skilled Non-EU immigrants that are causing the problems!
    Its the unskilled EU & illegal immigrants that are putting a strain on our system.
    Once again we have a government that will not tackle the real issues but still spend (Waste) our money on smoke and mirrors.
    Who are they trying to kid?

  • Comment number 24.

    Of course there should. There should be a ban on pretty much all immigration.

    And the BBC should stop being so biased in reporting the issue. The BBC is constantly trying to criticise the government's measures against immigration. I didn't hear such criticism when the last government was encouraging mass immigration.

    Labour lost the election because of immigration. Even Labour admit that. People can see the negative effects with their own eyes.

    I don't recall seeing the BBC launching debates inviting criticism of Labour's mass immigration failure, even though that went on for 13 years. Now, barely weeks into a new govt which is trying to sort out the mess, here's the BBC thread.

  • Comment number 25.

    Of course there should.

    Skilled immigrant workers are of benefit to this country, but in our national interest we should be able to control the ammount of immigrant workesr to suit the needs of our economy. Right now with a number of (mainly private sector) skilled workers unemployed there is no logical reason for allowing large numbers of people in. In fact we probably attract more than enough skilled workers from EU countries for our needs at present, so the cap for non-EU countries should be pretty low.

    If public sector workers also start to get laid-off due to budget measures to repair the public finances (after they we were nearly ruined by Labour)then the need for migrant skilled workers will be even less.

  • Comment number 26.

    Skilled workers should be allowed in.

    It is the asylum seekers/easy life seekers that should limited to 0.

    We took in are share,time to close the boarders ASAP.

  • Comment number 27.

    The total number of people allowed in, whether skilled or not, should be limited to 90% of the number of people leaving the country.
    That way we will gradually reduce the population towards a sustainable level.
    The task of politicians is to achieve population reduction as pleasantly as possible. If they don't act, nature will take its course quite drastically.

  • Comment number 28.

    I don't think we should have a cap, it should be a freeze. We should only admit immigrants from non-EU countries for specific jobs which cannot be filled any other way. We shouldn't be letting in hundreds of thousands, or tens of thousands, or even thousands, if we can avoid it.

  • Comment number 29.

    There should be no cap on skills.
    There should be a cap on the unskilled, which includes extended families of those wishing to burden the state.
    Concerns over a brain-drain. Well, during the last so-called brain-drain no MP's actually left these shores.

  • Comment number 30.

    Let's ask one question, why are there so many skilled or un-skilled overseas workers here, is it for the wages they will get, is it for the free NHS services and the benefits that they can apply for which they can't get in their own country or is it all of them? Not everyone is fleeing from tyranny and unrest.

    I don't know if I'm the only one who feels that no-one, EU or non-EU workers, skilled or not, should not be allowed to work here unless there is absolutely no chance of anyone already living here being able to do the intended job, even if it means training them for it.

    There are what, around two million out of work here, that's two million too many, we should sort out the unemployment we have already before allowing anyone else to come into the country and take jobs, we have so many unemployed people here, foreign or not, who end up on unemployment benefits etc. because they lose the job or leave the job they came here to do, that we shouldn't allow anymore to come.

    One thing we could do I suppose, but would it work is, if we have EU or non-EU workers who come here to do a specific job, they should sign a contract of entry which states that if and when that job finishes, they do not apply for unemployment benefit and must return to their own country and then re-apply to come back when they are offered another job.

    Another way is that companies that want to employ overseas workers, skilled or otherwise, have to sign an agreement stating that if the employment ceases, they will help the worker to return to his/her own country.

    Also if a foreign national has no employment within a year, they should be returned to their own country. I know how what I am saying sounds, but if they choose to be un-employed (and there are jobs out there, even if they are menial ones, at least it would be a job until something better comes up), then they should be un-employed in their own country.

    Where I live there's a lot of unemployment British or not, unfortunately a large majority of them are foreign nationals, businesses have shut down because of the past recession which means more are un-employed, school leavers Easter, Summer and Autumn will add to the already high un-employment figures and what will they do, go on Un-employment Benefit, that's why we can't let anyone else in.

    Unless something drastic is done the un-employment will never go down, only up year after year.

  • Comment number 31.

    Should there be a cap on skilled workers?
    No.
    But this is a smoke screen for allowing low skilled workers to enter the Country.
    Many of them probably have more thaan one Passport and so will work and claim benifits.
    You are not a racist if you only allow in people who can offer the UK skills and not scrounge. sadly labour let in everyone who could walk through the front door...........And many more who just claimed they were persicuted.
    I voted Labour all my life.Never again.
    They represent everyone bar the average working class Brit!

  • Comment number 32.

    What would be far more beneficial would be a cap on UN-SKILLED workers regardless of where they come from.

    We have more than enough people in this country who are unemployable without allowing more in, but yet again this new government seems to bottle it on any big decision, no doubt frightened to upset the liberals!

  • Comment number 33.

    All this will do is hugely inflate those that come here illegally - and they don't pay taxes.

    Also
    I assume people who moan about high immigration have two kids or less? No then your problem isn't a 'full Britain'. . .

  • Comment number 34.

    Skilled workers are required in this country, especially oversees Doctors and Nurses as we do not seem to have enough coming through the ranks!
    We shouldn't be including highly skilled with non skilled migrants, at least they can offer something to the system and pay NI and Tax. A cap on all immigration needs to happen be it skilled or non skilled as we do not have the infrastructure or money to cope with it. However, UK citizens have to get a class system out of thier heads and be prepared to do remedial work that we rely on these people to do, there is no shame on cleaning but there is for claiming!

  • Comment number 35.

    Yes, there should be a Cap, even on skilled immigration posts. Good reasons for this are to encourage employers to start training the jobless or existing workers within the UK, to do those skilled jobs that employers say they need, and by tapering external recruitment gradually, we will build the skills of our people who live in the UK, who will be expected, by this Government to work and not claim benefit. The other good reason is with unemployment expected to rise, our country is going to need vacancies to fill and reduce unemployment and claimants and increase employment and tax-payers. The one thing missing from the governments plan is a requirement for companies to train by way of apprenticeship or other designation and plan correctly and responsibly for there own Commercial welfare, and not simply to continue being a 'buyer' of Immigration skills.

  • Comment number 36.

    18. At 11:52am on 28 Jun 2010, Lisa Crane wrote:
    This country cannot take anymore immigrants, this is half the trouble why the country is in the state it is!!!
    We need to look after the people who were born here.


    ------

    And we need the immigrants to look after us.

    Anyone with experience of home-help or the NHS knows that both organisations are utterly dependant on non-EU immigrants.

    Unless you can find a way to make the British-born take these jobs then a complete ban on immigrants will impact on everybody in the country's well-being, especially in our old age.

  • Comment number 37.

    Oh, great. So now we're going to reduce the number of skilled workers who bring valuable talents into the country and contribute in the same way as the rest of us? What good is that going to do?!

    This is a cheap trick to make it look like the Government is tackling immigration. What they really need to do is find out how many immigrants are here illegally, and look into how much it's costing us to keep asylum seekers etc who don't pay tax.

    This new Government appears to be going for the record - the largest number of stupid ideas by a Government in its first three months of office!

  • Comment number 38.

    Not too tough, just too late!

  • Comment number 39.

    The rules are not tough enough, firstly we should employ our own (and we should be training a lot more), then the Europeans and everybody else last.

  • Comment number 40.

    "Should there be a cap on skilled workers?"

    Yes, preferably a bright green baseball cap...

  • Comment number 41.

    I work in the IT industry. For years employers have been importing developers from the 3rd world by exploiting inter-company transfer rules and claiming that there are skill shortages in the UK. There aren't though, however much employers insist there are. Just a shortage of people will loads of skills prepared to work for very little money. Hence developers from outside the EU paid less than the going rate for this country, terrified to say no to any demands in case they get sent home. It's greedy and exploitative and short sighted.

  • Comment number 42.

    The measures aren't tough enough.The UK turned its back on its own people years ago. The government should be encouraging our people to get off their backsides and into work to get the skills they need. Labour put an end to that by developing the welfare state and they destroyed anyones desire to actually get the skills to work. 'Great' Britain is slowly but surely ceasing to exist because we no longer encourage our own to be something of themselves. We now rely on foreigners to fill the gaps because Labour and their crazy ideas of a multicultural welfare society basically sent the message out that its ok to not work as you would have been better off sitting at home doing nothing. This is a good move by the government but needs to go further and we need to invest in our own people.

  • Comment number 43.

    I have involvement in the delivery of work place health sector courses.

    Most if not all nursing and residential care homes would be forced to close if it were not for the presence of the non-EU workers within these organisations.

    These people will be deemed "unskilled" and consequently the cap on their entry is effectively Zero.

    The number of UK nationals and EU workers prepared to undertake these demanding but low paid posts are few and far between with the exception of some migrants from new entrant countries such as Poland who normally have exceptional skills and far higher academic standards than their UK unskilled counterparts.


    I wonder if Mr Camclegg and the Baron Osborne "we're all in it together" policy will extend to residential care for elderly British nationals
    No?
    Thought not!

  • Comment number 44.

    Yes, there should be a limit on non-european it should be set at NIL and force the non-working under 25 to become skilled in the areas that are under staffed.

    I did one year of a two year course at college and as my parents 'saw no future' in my chosen career, I was made to leave and work in a industry that I hated. Looking back it made me more determined to follow what I wanted and found very quickly that I had natural talents and had very happy and rewarding working life in my three chosen fields. Having three 'strings to my bow' meant when I was unemployed this only lasted a few days. They say variety is the spice of life and I can definitely recommend it.

    Make people work and bring back National Service, no job or training scheme when leaving school at 16 means National Service until 18. This worked in the past and kept unemployment to a minimum. Apply this to both migrants and UK people.

  • Comment number 45.

    It's all completely and utterly meaningless because any immigration constraints are only applicable to non-EU citizens. Likwe with the previous administration it's just an attempt by the Government to showw that they are in control of a situation which really they are not.
    How about showing some real leadership and putting a cap on EU immigrants? Italian football team managers for example. Then there's the job of throwing out all those people we don't want or need (see previous example). . .

  • Comment number 46.

    Went to India to do a computer course, couldnt get an educational visa in case it was a ploy to steal an Indians job, was told to lie and get a tourist visa, depite the company I was going to train with having all sorts of awards and over a hundred employees.
    Cant go to Australia as too old, dont have a snowballs chance in hell of getting emmigrating to USA despite us being US most loyal ally in todays troubles. Yet my chosen profession has been decimated by Indian IT workers.

    Immigration s good for us? Not for me and UK immigration policies are the most lax in the world.

    Whats good for companies according to government ie cheap labour is not good for the people in this country.

  • Comment number 47.

    While the Tories are going on about 'caps' the EU is signing us up to opening to temporary skilled labour, from outside the EU, brought in by transationals as 'intracorporate transferees'. No caps, and permanent commitments in this obscurely named 'Mode 4' aspect of the international trade agenda. In fact, in the process, we lose national cotrol of our labour migration policy.

    India is pushing hard for this access for its transnationals (not just for IT - Tata owns Corus, Jaguar). There is an EU/India Free Trade Agreement being fast tracked RIGHT NOW. Unfortunately, although big business knows all about this and is pushing it along in Brussels and with the UK govt, someone - the BBC - has so far failed to tell the UK public any of this. Its not just England footballers who dont seem to be earning their money and privilege.

  • Comment number 48.

    Our country isn't full and nor do these migrants come and sponge off our state. Proof?

    Go take a look in your hospital, the late night shift work working around suffering people is done mostly by migrants. There is also a large portion of highly skilled doctors and surgeons who are migrants.

    Go look in the potato packing factories or crop pickers, who do 10 hours a day in what are very menial tasks, often in poor conditions.

    Consider again therefore the plans of the right wing and mail readers to "train indigenous unemployed here to fill the gap."
    Would you feel more comfortable with a girl named Starbux who has nine kids performing open heart surgery? Perhaps you as an employed would like to hire Mental Mike, the towns local celebritity with his cultured mix of gangsta rap and car jacking?

    The ignorance of some defies belief and boils down to closet racism. We rely on migrants workers so much, why on earth would you want to limit skilled people coming into the country?

  • Comment number 49.

    The topic of this debate should not be 'Should there be a cap on skilled workers?' it should be 'Why does this country not produce enough skilled workers?'. Resolve this and the original question will resolve itself.

  • Comment number 50.

    Yes they should.

    The IT Sector has suffered over the years due to a huge influx of Indian subcontractors to replace full-time employees under the guise of "outsourcing".

    We are constantly told there is a skills shortage, yet companies axe their training budgets and staff and bring in "cheap" labour to replace them.

    Its a 1-dimensional solution to a problem and its time that companies trained their workforces rather than tossing them on the scrap heap.

  • Comment number 51.

    Putting a cap on non-Eu immigration is like trying to bail out the Titanic with a spoon given that we gave up any border controls to the EU, it's an irrelevance now. ALL immigration should be based on the need of the country, not the benefit of the foreign individual. Our governments of the past few years seem very confused as to who thier true duty lies with - oddly they seem to think it's with everyone other than the current population - they seem to think we have a duty to every other country but our own. As long as we have one single fit person unemployed, we do not need to import any unskilled labour. Work for welfare would resolve this. For skilled roles, lets allow immigration like more sensible countires do - based on their own needs.

  • Comment number 52.

    Perhaps if our education system hadn't been decimated; we weren't putting everyone and his dog through higher education; our schools and universities were actually employing dedicated educators instead of money-hungry people who think they are too good to do the menial tasks; and the country's business wasn't still run by the old boy network, we would produce a worthy crop of skilled and motivated individuals for our workforce, who would stay in jobs and work hard because they knew they would be valued. As it is, we need all the help we can get ....

  • Comment number 53.

    The problems in this country are the fault of immigrants; specifically one family of immigrants who have been leeching off the rest of us for hundreds of years; stealing our land and our wealth and subjugating us all into a life of servitude and peasantry.

    The sooner we rid ourselves of these foreign parasites the better life will be for the rest of us. Just imagine how much space we'd all have if all of the lands stolen by the Monarchy were returned to their rightful owners, how much tourism would be generated if the artworks and antiques currently stored in private vaults were put on display in our museums and galleries and how nice it would feel to be a free citizen in a truly Democratic nation instead of being the subject of some foreign Monarch in this quasi-representative Kakistocracy.

  • Comment number 54.

    The question is not merely of where do you draw the line but how do you tell if it has been crossed? Should technology be introduced more broadly in all government decision making to highlight clear cases where the line has been crossed and who would arbitrate?

  • Comment number 55.

    The cap does not go anywhere near far enough. The skills that we seem to so desparately need should be addressed here, in this country. Train the people we need in the areas where we need them. Don't just rely on a conveyor-belt of foreign labour!! When benefit payments are addressed and we see salaries outstripping scrounge payments, then we may see people attempting to gain the skills we so desparately need and going back to work - as it should be.
    The Lib-Con Coalition is making a great start and I applaud many of the measures they are trying to implement.

  • Comment number 56.

    "17. At 11:52am on 28 Jun 2010, Lynn from Sussex wrote:

    There has been uncontrolled immigration for years under Labour. Of course this is a sensible measure as it will be flexible enough to allow those whose skills are sought in the UK to enter. "

    To me this is a strange point of view and I wonder, if you dont mind me asking Lynn, are you finding difficulty actively seeking from work? If not what area are you in? For example if its accountancy from what I have heard Accountancy is going to be the new IT i.e people from the Indian subcontinent will do your job cheaper both overseas and if as you say should be allowed to enter the UK you may be competing directly against someone willing to work for half what you do now.
    If on the other hand you own you own business and purely want cheap labour then you would be quids in.

  • Comment number 57.

    Why bother capping skilled workers, when unskilled migrants are still free to flood in from the EU?

  • Comment number 58.

    The population is now 62 million and unemployment is still sky rocketing thanks to Labour's age old policy of spending money we don't have and crippling the country with debt. By the time all the non jobs have been done away with in the public sector, unemployment will be over 3 million so serious action has to be taken.

    It's at least encouraging that the new government are looking into this area of policy instead of Labour's approach of branding anyone who mentions the 'I' word as a bigot.

  • Comment number 59.

    What a completely ridiculous question - We have no Industrial Manufacturing Base left to speak off - So where are these skilled workers going to be employed ????

    The Government should stop talking rubbish and get our Industrial Economy back on it's feet again - Create Support - Create Jobs - Create Growth etc., which as we are all aware has been decimated through - Restriction & Regulation from the EU - The ever developing unequal playing field between Imports of Goods against supporting our Industries - and of course The horrendous debt-burden we now carry !

    I suggest The Government gets back into the real world !!

  • Comment number 60.

    Completely agree with nos 11 to 15

    The problem is EU directives that mean EU citizens can come here in enormous numbers from areas of low pay and high unemployment - to here - at the expense of our UK workers. Our workers are no longer trained by the CONDEM lauded private sector as they used to be. Why?

    It is cheaper to employ other EU citizens - which are 80% of the immigration workers anyway. All suitable jobs should be ring fenced for UK workers first.

    The cap of 5% on non-EU immigration is derisory. It still allows around 456,000 non-EU workers in a year - Far Far too many.

    We need lots of low skill - manual - useful work for all UK citizens FIRST - paid by the private sector. And a policy to train on the job to raise skill levels PAID by the private sector.

    Then and only then should ANY immigrant be allowed in.

    At the moment the private sector is only interested in money and profit - not what is good for the country.

  • Comment number 61.

    Stop all immigration.

    Give our future generations of youngsters a job and a future.

  • Comment number 62.

    If any Country intends to make a progress, it must ensure that skill workers come freely into the Country with a limit maintained; facing minimum of restrictions or resistances notwithstanding the risk involved, of many might come in disguise as talents are mostly rare to find. However, there are elements of interest available everywhere who intend to come to another Country to create separate entity within the Country to work on the behalf of others than delivering any good to the Country where he or she is living. So long such elements are under check, there is no harm allowing others to come-in, to assist delivery in filling up the gap within the Society for betterment of us at the shortest possible time.

    An advance preparation for issuing a temporary ban on it, not to pile up applications is purely unjustified other than earning of a bad name to the system in place; since all such works are mostly performed through use of Computers only and not done manually to over burden any through the exercise.

    (Dr.M.M.HAZARIKA, PhD)

  • Comment number 63.

    Migrants seem at times to be the ONLY people working in large areas of this country. Getting rid of them will result in mammoth companies having a monopoly in their chosen field. In industrial cities, thank God for the migrants (first and second generation) who help to provide us with sensibly priced labour to help with house repairs and cheap-shops and greengrocers and car mechanics in back streets and and and... The list could continue. (I hesitate to include the world of medicine and health because we'd all be in a right pickle if we were able to get rid of first and second generation migrants in these areas!)

  • Comment number 64.

    No, Ive just spent ages trying get a builder to do some work for me most english builders don't want the work because its only a small job other are just cowboys who I would not trust in the end I got a Polish bricklayer who did an excellent job for a very good price.

  • Comment number 65.

    This country is full. No other country as been as so tolerent as ours. Enough is enough. No more migrants.

  • Comment number 66.

    To all those who want to ban EU immigration I would just point out that we (poor trodden down hard done to Brits!)have precisely the same rights to work in other EU countries as their citizens have to work here. Shame is that because we can't be bothered to speak foreign tongues it make is more difficult for that it does for the better educated Poles, Latvians, and Lithuanians so reviled by so many correspondents here.

    However I would, in light of yesterday's debacle ensure that the proposed legislation for non EU immigration should be rigidly enforced for football players. That we we might just bring on some real talent of our own rather than relying on South Americans, Africans and Asians!

  • Comment number 67.

    Waiting for the first whinny so-and-so to say that if we don't allow companies to recruit from abroad they may relocate abroad.

    Byeeee

  • Comment number 68.

    In a nation such as Britain, you have to ask the question why do we need to import so many skilled workers? Is our education system so bad that it cannot produce the kind of quality people required by British companies? Are young people given the opportune to train for these roles and do they even want to?

  • Comment number 69.

    This is completely simple.

    Any company or service body that needs someone with a skill that they can't find, currently looks abroad.

    Make this illegal, especially if it means we leave the EU. Instead, force UK companies to train (remember that? TRAIN T. R. A. I. N.) someone to do the job.

    I want to see NIL EU and non EU immigration.

  • Comment number 70.

    There is no need to bring anyone in, skilled or otherwise, we are full. Try moving about the country, especially Friday night or Monday Morning.

    The only reason that companies want to bring in so called skilled labour is because they can get away with paying less.

    Anyway who decides who is "skilled?" Remember Doctor Daniel Ubani unlawfully killed overdose patient, and that is supposedly from Germany!

  • Comment number 71.

    NO, JUST TARGETTING NON-EU IMMIGRANTS IS JUST PLAIN DEVIOUS, BECAUSE IT WILL NOT ANY OVERAL LONG TERM BENEFIT EFFECT.

    WHAT IT HONESTLY AND TRUTHFULLY MEANS, IS THAT THOSE AREAS OF WORKERS CURRENTLY TARGETTED FOR RECRUITMENT IN NON EU COUNTRYS, WILL NOW JUST BE MUCH GREATER TARGETTED IN EU EAST EUROPE COUNTRYS. THE SHORTFALL OF NON-EU WORKERS WILL JUST BE MADE UP FROM OTHER EU MEMBERS.

    TO EVEN SUGGEST THAT SLOWING NON-EU IMMIGRANT LABOUR WILL HAVE AN OVERALL LASTING EFFECT ON EVEN REDUCING IMMIGRATION IS JUST A COMPLETE DEVIOUS LIE AND IS NOT BORN OUT OF FACTS AND IS TOTALLY NON-PROVABLE, BECAUSE FACTUALLY IT DOES NOTHING TO PREVENT JUST SWITCHING TO EMPLOY MORE & MORE FROM POORER EU COUNTRYS.

    THIS EU POLICY OF FREE/OPEN LABOUR MOVEMENT, IS BASICALLY THE CREATION OF A NOMADIC UNDERCLASS. WHILE THE RICHER EXECUTIVES CAN HAVE MULTIPLE HOMES AROUND THE WORLD AND FLIT TO WHICHEVER PROVIDES GREATEST TAX BENEFITS, EVEN LOWER MANAGEMENT LEVELS ARE NOW BEING PUSHED INTO NOMADIC LIFESTYLES.

    MANY WILL NOT HAVE A PLACE TO CALL HOME, BECAUSE WHEREVER THEY TRAVEL TO FOR WORK WILL JUST MAINLY BE TEMPORY AND THEY WILL THEN BE MADE TO LEAVE, UNLESS THEY HAVE WORKED FOR A PERIOD WHICH ENTITLES THEM TO UK BENEFITS SYSTEM.

    I PERSONALLY WOULD BRING IN A NEW UK EMPLOYMENT ENVIRONMENTAL SUSTAINABILITY REGULATION LAW WHICH INSISTS THAT ALL JOB APPLICATIONS ARE FIRST PUT AND FULLY ACCESSED BY LOCAL SKILLED PEOPLE AND MUST THEN ONLY BE PUT TO WIDER UK POPULATION, BEFORE IT IS EVEN CONSIDERED TO EMPLOY AN IMMIGRANT.

    IF EVENTUALLY A NON -UK PERSON IS EMPLOYED, THEN THAT BUSINESS MUST CONTRIBUTE AN ENVIRONMENTAL/EDUCATIONAL LEVY TO CONTRIBUTE TOWARDS TRAINING OF MORE UK PEOPLE TO AVOID THE MASSIVELY HUGE WASTE OF RESOURCES & EMISSIONS CREATED BY LONG DISTANT RECRUITMENT AT THE EXPENSE OF MAINTAINING AN EDUCATION/TRAINING SYSTEM IN UK WHICH DOES NOT PROVIDE FOR THE REQUIRED SKILLS/QUALIFICATIONS/COMPETANCE.

  • Comment number 72.

    Sorry for all the postings:
    But this is a subject that I really feel pasionate about.
    I have a solution if someone could set up an organise a system wherby every seat at the next general election is contested by someone in Eastern Europe or Indian subcontinent they offer to work for a say 30% of what our current mp's work for in terms of expenses and use their own family as researchers to work for nothing etc then if we all vote or them purely on the grounds of value for money. I am sure they would work as hard as our current rabble , then maybe if they experience exactly what a lot of UK skilled labour are at the moment the concept of skilled labour would take a different meaning. Politicians make me sick.

  • Comment number 73.

    Couldn't agree more with #11. Too many companies in this country want skilled workers with vast experience but aren't prepared to pay for it. They seem to want people who are already doing the same job elsewhere but won't offer any incentive to move then complain there's a shortage of skilled workers.

    Much like the football it's about time we started training the best from within and stop buying cheap imports.

  • Comment number 74.

    We need some joined up thinking here. On one hand IDS is asking for internal migration so that the UK unemployed can find jobs where there are jobs available, and the employers are complaining that they must import skiled staff from abroad. The key word is 'skilled'. What the government should be doing is forcing UK business to train the staff they need, in conjunction with the schools, universities and training centres. It is ludicrous to just keep importing people, and then discasrding them onto the growing heap of unemployed.
    One interest group was going on about the shortage of chefs and restaurant staff. Apparently they cannot train them because the government won't give them any money. They are making a classic case for the banning of the import of all kitchen staff, and forcing these presumably profitable businesses to do what business always has - to train there own. Maybe if employers paid a bit more, and made jobs permanent instead of casual, they wouldn't get such a high staff turnover that they have to replace. And maybe people already here would be more willing to get themselves educated to do the jobs. Business has let the UK down badly in recent years. It's time for the Coalition to do something about it - by aid or coercion. Real, long term, jobs for real long term people must be the goal.

  • Comment number 75.

    "#1. At 11:30am on 28 Jun 2010, me me me wrote:
    As far as I'm concerned, people should be free to choose where they want to work and not oppressed by a government."

    So when 10 guys come along, each prepared to do your job for half your wage because they live like a slave in a 1 bed flat you will be totally happy? Or would you expect your Government at least try to manage things so that workers here have a chance at earning a living here and not be 'swamped' by cheap labour?

    I have assumed of course you have a job.

  • Comment number 76.

    'Should there be cap on skilled workers'?

    This refers to non-EU migrants. Unfortunately, this cap on skilled workers may have to apply to us too - as Addenbrookes Hospital management, in Cambridge, has submitted a report to cut 170 nursing posts to save money on their salary costs?

    Very disturbing, and no mention of management pay cuts, naturally?

  • Comment number 77.

    NHS coul be described as 'unskilled' but these are the jobs which British people themselves won't take.
    /////////////////////////////////////////
    If they won't take them then they shouldn't get ANY help from us. Yes us,not the government, us ,the people who pay for all this nonsense.

    As for skilled jobs, why aren't we educating our own people to gain the skills we require ??
    There's been billions thrown at education. Where's the results.

  • Comment number 78.

    Yes - make sure the cap isn’t too big or too small for their head and it states “Non-EU Migrant Worker” on it.

    Using a baseball cap would probably be the most cost effective.

  • Comment number 79.

    Skilled, tax and NI paying immigrants are not really the problem except if the commit crimes or work for a couple of months so they can claim benefits. Its the ones who use the excuse they are in danger in their own country but commit crimes over here and are allowed to get away with it only a possible prison sentence, so they still get free board and lodging, to me they should be deported straight, away no excuses. All illegals and so called asylem seekers should go as should the many "mothers to be" who come here from many other countries to have their babies then claim benefits etc. To say only Asians or some other nationality can only do a certain job must be nonsense, if a Brit did this it would be called racism wouldn't it? People on benefits should take any have to take any job and not be so "picki" or pick up litter, clean up dog mess, clean graffiti from walls so they actually "earn" these hand outs. This would encourage them surely to look for a more satisfying job so then even less immigration.

  • Comment number 80.

    A cap is required but a match of skills required and skills offered should be paramount.

  • Comment number 81.

    Immigrants do a lot of the jobs that our unemployed are either too proud to do or its just too easy to claim benefits.

    Cut unemployment benefit/job seekers allowance, allocate jobs to the work shy. No work, no money, its that simple. I have no problems with immigrants so long as they are no entitled to any benefits (Free NHS, employment benefit etc) until they have served 10 years employment in the UK.

  • Comment number 82.

    "We need to look after the people who were born here."

    Maybe if they weren't such a bunch of moaning whinging lazy no-hopers they could look after themselves.....

  • Comment number 83.

    One thing evident from the comments is the ignorance of people.

    Skilled workers are NOT ELIGIBLE FOR ANY BENEFIT EXCEPT NHS EVEN THOUGH THEY PAY A LOT OF TAX.

    You will not wait 6 monthes as an employer to find a local worker.

    You will not want to spend a lot of money, as an employer, training a local worker if you can find a foreign worker already trained and experienced with high work ethics.

  • Comment number 84.

    Yes, a cap should be put in place to ensure immigration is controlled.

    However, this recent development begs the question "is this a reflection of fair-play?"

    Why would would you take student visa fees from a hard-working individual, charge premium fees for a masters degree (in my own case £18,500!), charge £750 for Tier 1 General which is an equivalent to the highly skilled workers "limited leave to remain", in addition to maintenance fees (£800)and other challenging requirements to meet up the point-based system with the "promise of legitimacy and an opening playing field for employment".

    And then turn round to say "Tom" should be favoured first when competing for a job of which I am equally or more skilled because he is British and I'm not. Is this fair?

  • Comment number 85.

    without immigrants McDonalds, Starbucks, Supermarkets, our Hospitals wouldnt function.

    We should export our unemployed worker abroad. Maybe they will learn that there is no such thing as a free lunch and you have to work. If there is no work near you, move. It is that simple.

  • Comment number 86.

    oops - made a mistake with numbers - but not with sentiment. 24.000 is far far too many.

    There should be a cap on all immigration - unless all UK workers are already in work or in a training scheme run and paid for by the private sector.

    This used to be the case. Now the private sector is only interested in profit and money - not for the good of the country.

  • Comment number 87.

    No. They should all be allowed in. The more skilled workers that come to the UK, the more competitive wages here become. Also, it pushes up property prices, making us all richer.

    It's tantamount to Stalinist meddling to start setting "quotas" some time in advance. The Conservatives are worse than Labour here- more nanny state bureaucracy.

    Will there be any corresponding reduction in unskilled non-EU immigration?

  • Comment number 88.

    The current situation is that the UK electorate wants a draconian cut back in immigration, stronger border controls and the ability to deport anyone who is not wanted in this country. We should put a stop to the frittering away of UK nationality and no further UK passports should be given to foreign nationals. We should only allow into the UK any person with a skill than is not available within the UK, but the employers should be given a period of time in which to train a UK national to do the job so that the foreign national who came can be returned to their country of origin. A complete end to immigration from any country with the ability to reside permanently in the UK must stop.

  • Comment number 89.

    If we deported one (family) of asylum seakers, illegal immigrants or unskilled economic migrants per skilled immigrant family then there would be no need for a cap.
    We could go further and transport one malingering family of dole scroungers per skilled immigrant, thereby increasing the number of places available.
    Everyone would be happy except the looney left, dole scroungers and asylum seakers etc.

  • Comment number 90.

    "The measures aren't tough enough.The UK turned its back on its own people years ago. The government should be encouraging our people to get off their backsides and into work to get the skills they need. Labour put an end to that by developing the welfare state and they destroyed anyones desire to actually get the skills to work. 'Great' Britain is slowly but surely ceasing to exist because we no longer encourage our own to be something of themselves. We now rely on foreigners to fill the gaps because Labour and their crazy ideas of a multicultural welfare society basically sent the message out that its ok to not work as you would have been better off sitting at home doing nothing. This is a good move by the government but needs to go further and we need to invest in our own people."

    And bring back hanging and bally national service. That's what I say.

  • Comment number 91.

    Let's be very clear on a few points.

    1. Only 1 in 8 migrants to the UK are from outside the EU. Therefore, by definition, it follows that the cap on non-EU migrants that is currently being proposed will affect less than 12.5% of migrants to the UK.

    2. Until they become permanent residents, which can take anything from 3 to 6 years, non-EU migrants are not allowed to claim *any* benefit and in the meantime, are more than likely compared to British citizens to be in full-time employment, paying income taxes and national insurance. In effect, non-EU migrants contribute disproportionately to the benefits that citizens claim.

    3. In stark contrast, EU migrants are allowed to claim benefits in the UK. For example, it was reported that Polish workers in the UK claimed £36 million of Child Benefit for their children who were not even living in the UK. While EU workers here are also more likely than British citizens to be working and paying income taxes and national insurance, compared to non-EU migrants who are not allowed to claim any benefit, EU migrants are in fact less attractive than non-EU migrants.

    4. British universities, already cash-strapped, are facing further funding cuts. Non-EU students pay full fees, up to £10,000+ for a social-sciences course and much more for medical and engineering courses. Again, contrast this to EU students, who if they come to the UK to study, are entitled to pay fees at the local rates i.e. just £3,225 a year.

    In short, we are letting in people who claim benefits (EU migrants) and students who only pay local rates at universities (EU students) while actually keeping out migrants who are not allowed to claim benefits (non-EU workers) and also keeping out students who are currently subsidising British students at universities (non-EU students).

    Now, isn't that just PLAIN STUPID?

  • Comment number 92.

    Should there be a cap on skilled workers?
    No, there should be a cap on unskilled workers because unemployment in the United Kingdon is high. A cap on skilled workers will bring some businesses to slow-down if not halt.
    It's not migration that's the factor. The factor is whether the workers is needed in the UK economy.
    Doesn't the UK have a rating system - so many points for having enough money to support yourself at least for a few months, relatives in the UK (family reunion), occupational skill in demand...? A point system should take the guess-work out of the Immigration Process while ensuring that Immigrants do not become milestones around the neck of the economy.

  • Comment number 93.

    You only need to import labour if you have a labour shortage. There hasn't been a labour shortage in the UK for at least 30 years. Apart from a few specialist fields this country can satisfy its all its workplace requirements. By a bizzare coincidence British workers all became "workshy" when employers realised they could employ people from abroad on greatly reduced pay, terms and conditions.

  • Comment number 94.

    There are many UK IT workers who cannot get jobs - In addition there are also thousands of unemployed IT graduates - yet employers want to bring in skilled foreign IT workers. Why is this?

    It takes between one and two years of training and coaching for someone to be truly proficient and able to work on their own in apraticular technology - and that is if they are competent. The technology changes every 5 years or so and thus people require skills updating. The costs are substantial and once they have the skills, they can transfer to another employer on a higher wage who does no training at all.

    Employers can completely avoid training costs by using Indian off-shoring at less than half of the cost in th eUK and bringing skilled IT workers from India over here.

    Which do you think is the employer's favoured method and why do you think UK IT workers and graduates are unemployed?

  • Comment number 95.

    24. At 12:04pm on 28 Jun 2010, The Bloke wrote:
    "Of course there should. There should be a ban on pretty much all immigration.

    And the BBC should stop being so biased in reporting the issue. The BBC is constantly trying to criticise the government's measures against immigration. I didn't hear such criticism when the last government was encouraging mass immigration.

    Labour lost the election because of immigration. Even Labour admit that. People can see the negative effects with their own eyes.

    I don't recall seeing the BBC launching debates inviting criticism of Labour's mass immigration failure, even though that went on for 13 years. Now, barely weeks into a new govt which is trying to sort out the mess, here's the BBC thread."

    I suggest you teach yourself to be a bit more observant and use a little less selective memory - while Labour were in office there were so many BBC debates on 'Is immigration good for the UK?' and 'Should immigration be capped?' I lost count. I recall there were several interviews on TV conducted by BBC reporters grilling Labour MPs on peoples immigration concerns in the run up to the election.

    What people such as yourself do is cherry pick the bits that suite your anti-BBC agenda and conveniently forget the bits that don't, thus you end up with a skewed view of supposed BBC 'bias'. What the BBC does very well is report BOTH sides of the story, and i've seen this clear as day for myself in various debates and programmes over the past year or so.

    Look, i'm not anti-immigration but nor am I particularily pro-immigration, so I like the media to give me both sides and i'll make up my own mind from there. I suspect you probably really enjoy a good read of the Daily Mail because it agrees with your one-sided views, and as a result you end up closing yourself off to any other view that might be contrary...try challenging your OWN views and opinions for once and you might feel enlightened by the experience.

  • Comment number 96.

    First of all skilled immigration is not an issue. The main issue is the level of unskilled asylum seekers and illegal immigration amougst others who arrive here.

    These individuals arrive with little or no money and either undermine our society by undercutting all workers by willingly working for less then mininum wage or in unsafe conditions.

    Then there are those who somehow manage to be allowed to 'settle' in the country and work legally. These are the individuals who are entitled to benefits and housing because the pathetic liberals in this country and more then willingly to remove these individuals despite the strain on our resources.

    Last but not least, British citizenship shouldn't be a right for all, it should be taken from those who abuse it and their entire families. Please remind me why many who once receive their citizenship bring the rest of their families afterwards...

    We should also define settled and work. There is quite a difference and we should ensure people are aware that simply working in the UK shouldn't entitle you to settle here.

    Then of course the UK as a whole should get together and have a honest debate about the limits of this country and her resources. I personally do not want to rely on exports for resources and would prefer a strict population control.

    I could continue and in great detail but it's a waste engaging here, it's not the real kind of platform one needs to spread his policies.

  • Comment number 97.

    The NHS could recruit all its staff from this country. They reason it doesn't is institutional multiculuralism, and the fact British medical school earn loads more if they train a foreign student rather than a British one

  • Comment number 98.

    The problem isn't "skilled workers" (we often need them in nursing, business, engineering etc), but rather the vast number of poor, uneducated, non-English speaking migrants, who get in either through relatives (or marriage), come from Commonwealth countries, or are assylum seakers. There are far too many elderly parents of past immigrants or uneducated people being allowed to come settle here. Many are simply unemployable, either based on their age or lack of English and basic computer skills, so they become a terrible burden on the state via welfare and the NHS. I don't mind the UK helping our fair share of assylum seekers who genuinely need our help, but we do not have the space, housing or resources to handle the number of migrants who have come here in recent years and who make no contribution to the system. This problem is more obvious in London, but if we have a major problem employing people who were actually born here, we certainly can't accomodate anymore migrants anywhere in the country.

  • Comment number 99.

    Ha ha! Prepare the tar and feathers! The HYS crowd is on a war path to rid this country from the plague and source of all of Britain's problems... immigrants.

    I would pay good money to see an all-out ban on immigration and the repatriation of existing foreign-born residents. I'd be the first to go, of course, but it would definitely be worth it if we got a front row seat to watch the country go down with its head held high and flags waving!

  • Comment number 100.

    Oh, I would add that it's a lie to say that Brits are not willingly to do certain types of work.

    The truth is that as Brits, natives of the land, we are aware of the best opportunites and those of us who seek work will pick the best opportunites. In the recession immigration has caused problems for everyone who is willing to take anything to get by.

    The first few years of the influx of Poles we witnessed how cheaply they worked, but do you still see that thesedays? Poles are not stupid, other immigrants are not stupid and once they found out how much they could earn many eventually began charging accordingly.

 

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