In response to the Home Secretary’s announcement on new points-based immigration system, COSLA Spokesperson for Community Wellbeing, Councillor Kelly Parry, stated:
“Scotland has benefited from free movement and it is still the most advantageous system for Scotland. Unfortunately, today’s announcement on our future post-Brexit immigration system will have critical implications for Scottish Local Government and Scotland in general. Overall, the aim of the proposed new system is to reduce migration. COSLA and Scottish Local Government have been clear a reduction of in-migration to Scotland will adversely impact on our economy, our workforce and our ageing population.
"We welcome some proposed changes to the new immigration system. We have long argued for a simpler system for employers to navigate, a reduction in the salary threshold, and lowering of the skills threshold. However, they do not go far enough. For example, we know that less than 10% of those in social care occupations earn above £25,000. It is time the UK immigration system recognises high value jobs that are crucial to our communities over arbitrary skills and salary thresholds.
"COSLA will continue to lobby to shape the immigration system in order for it to meets the needs of Scotland.”