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MP and hospitality leaders lobby minister to abandon ‘damaging’ immigration plans

July 1, 2019 1:01 PM

Tim meeting with the immigration ministerThis week, South Lakes MP Tim Farron led a group of hospitality leaders to meet with immigration minister Caroline Nokes to ask her to scrap plans which would make it much harder to recruit staff.

In the Government's new immigration bill, people from outside the UK will only be able to get a work visa if they find a job which pays at least £30,000 a year.

During the meeting, Tim made the case that these measures would be debilitating for many businesses in the Lake District and across the rest of the country.

Attending the meeting were leaders from local businesses Lake District Country House, Windermere Lake Cruises and Mountain Goat Tours, as well as representatives from UK Hospitality, Edwardian Hotels, Intercontinental Hotels Group, Nando's and the Beer and Pub Association.

Tim said: "I'm really grateful to the minister for agreeing to take the time to meet with us and hear our concerns.

"The £30,000 salary floor, which is almost twice the average wage in hospitality, is completely unrealistic and seriously harmful to our vital local tourism industry.

"There are over 20,000 non-UK staff working in our tourism and hospitality industry locally. And with only a few hundred people registered as unemployed in Westmorland and Lonsdale there is no untapped pool of local labour waiting to fill the thousands of vacancies this Government will force on the industry.

"The minister was very receptive to our case and I will continue to work with representatives from across the hospitality sector to encourage the Government to change their mind."