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27 Jan 2021 | 1 comment

As part of our involvement with the IRC, the ACT and a number of other trade organisations with the retailsector co-ordinate feedback amongst our members to influence Government policy.

26 Jan 2021 | 2 comments

TAITRA will host Online Sourcing Meetings with Taipei Cycle and TaiSPO Exhibitors on Thursday 4th of March

22 Jan 2021

Refocused assets for shops to display in-store for the safety of both customers and colleagues.

21 Jan 2021

The following quick and easy guide to Click and Collect can be used by all retailers, even if those that don't have an ecommerce platform

21 Jan 2021

The call to regulate BNPL firms like Klarna, Laybuy and Clearpay is now supported by 70 MPs, with many arguing that the FCA review is too lengthy and could leave consumers drowning in debt

21 Jan 2021

November's 2020 vs 2019 retail finance sales showed the highest growth since May 2020, when the UK was in the very midst of the cycling boom. This positive trend is showing no signs of abating

19 Jan 2021

The Greeting Card Association (GCA) have created a 2021 Valentines Day Toolkit, with the aim of helping retailers promote Valentine's Day in their stores and online.

18 Jan 2021

The Welsh Government has published a white paper setting out its plans for a Clean Air (Wales) Bill, to protect the health of the nation and ecosystems from pollutants in the atmosphere. ...

15 Jan 2021

Following today's Supreme Court ruling tens of thousands of small businesses will receive insurance payouts covering losses from the first national lockdown.

14 Jan 2021

The aim of Hubtiger is to help bike shops do better business by improving workshop efficiency, increasing revenue and enhancing the customer experience.

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How to employ Low Skills workers in post Brexit UK

Posted on in Business News , Cycles News


ActSmart pabrexitrtner Tom Redfern, Founder and Senior Partner at Redfern Legal LLP, investigates ways in which it is still possible to employ a low skills worker who is not a UK national

Until 31 December 2020 it was possible for an EU national to arrive in the UK to intend to live and work visa free and to do any kind of work. People from the rest of the world need a visa to be able to live and work visa free and then they are limited to the kind of work of work they can do. Till 31 December 2020, it needed to be highly skilled work - RQF6, the equivalent of degree standard.

 From 1 January 2021 it is a brave new visa world. EU nationals arriving, with the exception of the Irish who do not need a visa, are now treated in exactly the same way as the rest of the world. A visa is required and the type of job they can do must be at a skilled level - RQF3, the equivalent of A level standard. There is also the shortage occupation list (SOL). SOL is an official list of occupations deemed important for which there are not enough resident workers to fill vacancies. The key benefit is lower salary thresholds.

Low skills jobs are not eligible for a work visa. Examples of low skill jobs - RFQ1 and 2 - include carers of the elderly, hotel and restaurant staff. None of these are on the SOL because they are not at RFQ3 skill level or above.

Priti Patel, the Home Secretary, commissioned the Migration Advisory Committee (MAC) in March 2020 to review the SOL in advance of 1 January 2021. The MAC report recommended 70 new job titles be added to the SOL including nursing auxiliaries and assistants; residential, day and domiciliary care managers.

Usually, MAC recommendations are accepted by the Government and introduced into law. Not this time. In a surprise, Ms Patel stated in October 2020 the Government had decided not to immediately accept any of the recommendations contained in the MAC's SOL report. The Home Secretary stated that before changing the SOLs, there should be an assessment of the development and recovery of the UK labour market after the coronavirus crisis and in response to the new Points-Based Immigration System.

So if you want to employ a low skills worker who is not a UK national, how can you do it?

There are the following options:

1 Employ an Irish national

2 Employ the dependent spouse of a migrant sponsored under Tier 2 who is here to fulfil a skilled role

3 Employ an EU national who arrived on or before 31 December 2020 and who has applied or is applying before 30 June 2021 for EU Settlement Scheme

4 Use the Youth Mobility scheme visa. Nationals from Australia, Canada, New Zealand, Hong Kong, Japan, Taiwan, South Korea, Monaco, San Marino aged between 18 and 30 can come for 2 years.

5 From summer 2021, the new Graduate Visa route will allow international students who have completed a UK degree to stay in the UK for two years after they have completed their studies.

And there is the seasonal worker visa (tier 5) for up to 6 months for farm work.

It does in our opinion seem highly likely that the Government will have to introduce a Low Skills visa eventually. A tier (tier 3) already exists for it, it just hasn't ever been used. King Canute commanded the tide not to wet his feet and we know what happened there - reality.

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