Tier 5 Religious Worker Visas — [Mike Gapes in the Chair]

Part of the debate – in Westminster Hall at 4:01 pm on 4th July 2019.

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Photo of Nick Hurd Nick Hurd The Minister of State, Home Department 4:01 pm, 4th July 2019

I am grateful for the empathy shown by the hon. Gentleman in saying that I am up against it. He should come to more police debates.

The changes that seem to be causing the most difficulty for hon. Members are the changes to the visa arrangement from tier 5 to tier 2. I have tried to explain that these changes are rooted in the strategy incubated in the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government, which focuses on the importance of reinforcing the need for English language skills and is rooted in a policy directed at greater social cohesion. In relation to the cooling-off period for tier 5, I think I was clear that that was driven by evidence of a small, but growing misuse of that system, with people effectively here on a permanent basis. [Interruption.] I have been asked a straight question and that is a straight answer.