New hope for Filipinos

PUBLISHED: 01:01 24 January 2008 | UPDATED: 08:47 10 June 2010

FREE legal advice could open the door to migrant workers to continue using their skills in British healthcare. Professionals from all over the world faced deportation at the end of last year when Home Office regulations changed, threatening to drive out s

FREE legal advice could open the door to migrant workers to continue using their skills in British healthcare.Professionals from all over the world faced deportation at the end of last year when Home Office regulations changed, threatening to drive out skilled foreign employees. Senior care workers at the likes of Budleigh Salterton's Bay Court - many of them Filipinos who had arrived in Britain some time ago to start new lives - suddenly saw work visas denied. New rulings over qualification requirements saw hundreds of jobs threatened.A Budleigh resident and Bay Court worker, Filipino Lea Abad said: "We are very happy here, and want to stay. "As long as my children are in school, we will definitely want to keep working here."A new year has brought fresh hope for workers, a furious public and political backlash leading to a relaxation on work visa rulings.Taunton-based Peter Frier has formed the UK Employer and Carers Group, and is now putting together support for a judicial review of the Home Office decision. Mr Frier said: "Our country invited these overseas workers and most of them gave up good, rare jobs in their own country. "They have also raised our standards of care, brought their families over and paid their taxes."The Home Office has partly relented and is now offering us a new consultation period, but individuals need to take action."The group has now sided with Middlesex-based solicitors Aston Brooke for the judicial review and no-win, no-fee representation for overseas workers.Principal of Aston Brooke solicitors Kashif Majeed said: "The fact that the Secretary of State has now agreed to undertake a consultation is a victory for the entire health care sector. "This proves the government cannot simply implement policies without full consideration of the effects."The government's relaxation of rules has put the brakes on deportation.The government claim the stance over overseas work requirements balances British employment targets and the needs of care residents. For more information on rights for overseas workers contact Aston Brookes on (020) 8901 7901.

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