Two stories have made the headlines today, and both relate to stretched resources. The stories look at preparing the UK immigration system for after Brexit, and the Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC) enforcing employers to publish gender pay gap information.
In the latest round of changes to the Immigration Rules, two changes to the rules on continuous residence are likely to have a significant impact for many of those looking to secure indefinite leave to remain (ILR) in the UK.
As you will no doubt have seen in the news, progress has been made in phase one of the Brexit negotiations. We have prepared a summary of the position on citizens' rights; whilst it has been stressed that "nothing is agreed until everything is agreed", the lie of the land is starting to look a little clearer for those EEA nationals who are already in the UK.
The Times newspaper has revealed plans by Scottish ministers to pave the way for a bespoke immigration system.
Scottish ministers are concerned that Brexit will lead to a fall in immigrant workers, who are vital to the Scottish economy. Alasdair Allan, the Scottish government's Europe minister, raised this as an issue to the Europe Committee earlier in 2017. He said: "The Scottish government will continue to call for a less restrictive and more humane system from the UK which recognises individual and demographic circumstances."
The EU and UK have concluded their fifth round of negotiations.
Progress has been made on coming to an agreement in relation to the rights of EU citizens living in the UK. Some points are still to be negotiated.
As you may have seen, People Management recently published an article on some of the big developments in employment law in 2017, particularly Brexit and the Taylor review. In the lead up to triggering Article 50, the government maintained that there would not be any change to workers' rights following Brexit, so it would be brave to take away key protections, many of which derive from UK law anyway. Other commentators suggested there may be reforms to TUPE, although agreed that it will stay, but perhaps in a slightly amended form. As for a new visa regime for workers, the outcome is unclear. The uncertainty has already caused many workers to leave at a time where we are beginning to see a shortage of labour. This has not been helped by the recent leaked Home Office post-Brexit Immigration Policy which has confirmed the fears of employers with respect to the future of EU workers in the UK.
As many of you will have seen, the Home Office's draft Post-Brexit Immigration Policy was leaked this week, and has since become a topic of much interest.
The document has caused concern among many employers, as the stricter controls being proposed on EU immigration could lead to a significant shortage of labour in the UK, which could be hugely damaging to the economy. EU nationals currently comprise around 7% of the overall workforce in UK, with certain sectors almost entirely dependant on their contribution.