Suella Braverman to blast low-skill migrant rules

Suella Braverman to blast low-skill migrant rules as immigration minister Robert Jenrick admits colleagues have been ‘naive’ about allowing higher levels of workers

  •  Mr Jenrick called for ‘substantial and sustained reduction’ to legal migration 

Suella Braverman is determined to reform the immigration system after numbers were allowed to get too high after Brexit, the Tory conference heard yesterday.

Immigration minister Robert Jenrick admitted colleagues had been ‘naive’ about allowing in higher levels of low- and medium-skilled workers.

Home Secretary Mrs Braverman will deliver her keynote address to the Conservative conference in Manchester today, which is expected to address the points raised by Mr Jenrick.

He said there should be a ‘substantial and sustained reduction’ in legal migration – potentially through reducing the number of care workers brought in and in curbing dependants.

The minimum pay required for a work visa could also be increased from £26,000 to ‘something more akin to the median salary’ of £34,500, Mr Jenrick added.

Suella Braverman is expected to use her keynote speech at the Tory conference to set out her plan to reform the immigration system

At a meeting organised by think-tank Policy Exchange, immigration minister Robert Jenrick called for a ‘substantial and sustained reduction’ to legal migration levels

‘What I am concerned about are the decisions immediately after we left the European Union which in some cases were quite naïve about the consequences,’ he said at a conference fringe event. 

Minister: Green burden on families ‘immoral’

Making people poorer by imposing costly net zero policies on them would be ‘immoral’, the Energy Secretary said yesterday.

Claire Coutinho argued the carbon-cutting pledge had become a ‘religion’ to activists despite the ‘intolerable cost’ for ordinary families.

She urged politicians to be ‘honest about the challenges’. Defending Rishi Sunak’s delay to bans on petrol and diesel cars, she said green policies imposed a burden when families could least afford it. She added: ‘Net zero can’t be something that is done to people by a privileged elite.

‘We cannot force people to make the wrong decisions for their families and it is immoral to put forward policies that will impoverish people here when emissions are rising abroad.’

Ms Coutinho announced an extra £80million to fund insulation for social housing in a bid to save families an average of £240 a year.

‘We established a legal migration system that was if anything more liberal than the system that we had when we were in the European Union. There will be reforms to unwind some of that.’

Official figures published in May showed there was a 24 per cent year-on-year increase in net migration, rising to 606,000 in 2022.

At the meeting, organised by the Policy Exchange think-tank, Professor Matthew Goodwin called for a ‘mature conversation about how we could encourage families to have more children’ to help reduce demand for migrant workers. 

Mr Jenrick said: ‘I agree strongly with the last point about families. We do need to encourage more families to have children.’

In a separate development, security minister Tom Tugendhat voiced scepticism over the UK leaving the European Human Rights Convention – a move previously backed by Mrs Braverman.

‘My position is really very simple, which is there are many treaties around the world. If you want to leave one, please explain to me how you’re going to address the gaps that they create,’ Mr Tugendhat told Times Radio yesterday.

‘Now, people who’ve said they want to leave the convention, I can understand the argument.

‘It does raise some pretty big questions whether that’s about the Good Friday Agreement, whether it’s about the devolved administrations, whether it’s about our relationships with other countries, including… the Windsor Agreement with the European Union.’

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