Dismore raises Windrush Generation scandal and Government immigration policy with Mayor

At today’s Mayor’s Question Time, Andrew Dismore AM, Labour London Assembly Member for Barnet and Camden questioned London Mayor Sadiq Khan over the Government’s hostile attitude towards immigration and its adverse impact on Londoners and London’s businesses. (video here)

Mr Dismore asked the Mayor:

‘Would you agree that the scandalous treatment of the Windrush Generation is not just an appalling way to behave towards people that have lived and worked here for decades perfectly legally, but has also demonstrated yet again the consequences of the Conservative Government’s hostility to immigration. London is dependent on migrant labour, both from the EU and also beyond. How can London’s migrants be reassured of their welcome and future status here?

‘Isn’t it the case that the cap on non-EU skilled workers reached its limit for the fourth month in a row in March with 6,000 skilled workers refused visas, including 1,518 doctors. Businesses wanting to bring non-EU workers to the UK for most jobs now have to show salaries of more than £60,000. More than 80% of professional employee jobs pay less than that. And with 600,000 jobs in London carried out by EU-born workers, especially in hospitality, construction and tech, where 1 in 4 start-ups were co-founded by EU migrants- there is a real risk, isn’t there, that the Government are both misleading businesses by their claim that they can access talent from non-EU countries,  and also their hostility to migrants threatens us with the  loss of existing skilled EU workers even before Brexit,  never mind afterwards, as they see the writing on the wall from this incompetent Conservative Government?’

The Mayor said that it is a national scandal, discriminating against Londoners with a right to be here. London is attractive to migrants and we have a slow-down in EU workers coming. It is damaging to London’s reputation and risks London’s economy. We all have a responsibility to reassure migrants that we value them. London has been open to businesses and migrants for a thousand years. We now have a perfect storm with EU nationals leaving London or not coming, and the Conservative Government’s  hard cap on numbers is stopping non-EU workers, with businesses and the public sector missing out on the staff they need, including doctors and teachers. The Government’s obsession with numbers is affecting lives. They are cutting off their nose to spite their face.