In response to the recent announcement by Britain to cut back ‘low-skilled’ immigrant workers from Europe and other countries, Various chefs and restaurateur based in London are voicing their anger and concern for the low-paid immigrants coming from countries like Bangladesh, India, Pakistan and other countries in search for jobs in sectors like catering and hospitality.
London based Indian origin Michelin Star British Chef Asma Khan, who runs an all-women restaurant called Darjeeling Express in London, lashed out at the British government on Instagram by saying, “Shame on the UK government who categorize people working in hospitality as “low Skilled” and not eligible for post-Brexit visas. I want the PM to come to serve tables in my restaurant for one day and then we can discuss what levels of skills are needed in hospitality.”
She further said that before this announcement, people from any EU country, the European Economic Area- Norway, Iceland, Liechtenstein and Switzerland could work in Britain’s hospitality sector. However, it seems you need to be a brain surgeon to get a visa to work in a restaurant.
A celebrity chef running his restaurants in the UK said “It’s a tough decision by the UK government but it is not the first time.”
According to the latest announcement of post-Brexit rules by Priti Patel, UK’s Home Secretary, migrants coming from Europe or other countries will have to meet the criteria of point-based system, which also includes English speaking skills, to qualify for a work visa in Britain. Post this announcement, Industry experts are voicing out their concerns for people like farmers, junior chefs and care workers.
Brian Clivaz, a London based restaurateur pointed out the problem of unemployment and staff shortage in the country. He tweeted by saying “We have the lowest unemployment for decades and still have staff shortage of chefs and service staff. We pay London living wages, where will our junior team members come from?” he asked.
Meanwhile, the confederation of British Industry, which claims to speak for around 1, 90,000 businesses in the UK warned on the repercussions of this latest move. It said that while the new rules are going to be beneficial for various sectors, it is going to be a problem for sectors like Construction, F&B and Hospitality.