27 Mar 2023
Professor Simon Bell has advised that the Migration Advisory Committee will be launching an inquiry into the Seasonal Worker visa. In a letter to the Immigration Minister, Rt Hon Robert Jenrick MP, the following intention was outlined;
"I am writing on behalf of the Migration Advisory Committee (MAC) to inform you that we are launching an inquiry into the Seasonal Worker visa (SWV). Under the terms of the framework agreement between the Home Office and the MAC, we are able, alongside commissioned work from the government, to engage in work of our own choosing and to comment on the operation of any aspect of the immigration system.
Our intention is to take a broad perspective on this inquiry and consider all aspects of the SWV. This will include consideration of the rules under which the scheme operates, the size and costs of the scheme, the potential for exploitation and poor labour market practice, evidence from international comparisons and the long-run need for such a scheme.
We have no fixed view on the merits of the scheme, but believe it is a good time to review it given that it has been in operation for a number of years.
We will engage actively with all interested stakeholders and the devolved administrations.
I am copying the Secretary of State for the Department of Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA) and Minister for Food, Farming and Fisheries for information. We will obviously seek to work co-operatively with DEFRA on this inquiry.
As outlined in the framework document, we will ensure that this inquiry does not impede the delivery of our report on the shortage occupation list that the Home Secretary requested on 16 February 2023.
On behalf of the Migration Advisory Committee"
27 Mar 2023