Almost 12 months ago, in June 2016 we saw the UK voting to leave the European Union in an unprecedented referendum, so what are the implications for the Springhill Group’s workforce.
After attending several employment law updates over the past several months, the real consequences of the vote are still very much unclear. Now the country gears up to vote in a snap general election scheduled to take place on 8th June 2017 due to claims that divisions within the Houses of Parliament are at risk of hampering the Brexit negotiations.
So what does this all mean for our valued workforce, particularly bearing in mind that we have a significant number of European employees working across the Springhill Care Group. The good news is that there are strong indications that, after the UK leaves the EU in March 2019 that the government will grant a form of permanent residence to those who have resided in the UK for at least five years as a qualified person, i.e. as a worker, self-employed, self-sufficient, student or jobseeker before a cut-off date is determined. This could be when we eventually leave the EU but it could be sooner. It is hoped that European employees who have been living in the UK before the cut-off date but have not yet completed five years as a qualified person will be given temporary permission to stay in the UK after Brexit and given the chance to complete the five-year period.
To ease employees’ concerns across the Springhill Care Group and help us plan for the future, we will be conducting an audit of our European employees and inviting them to communicate with us about any concerns they may have or questions to pose. As an employer we can also offer access to credible Home Office immigration advice, so do please contact the Human Resources department for further information if you wish to discuss this area further.
We value our diverse workforce and because at Springhill Care we have a diverse range of employees, we are well placed to understand the needs of a wide range of customers, and it also puts us in a good position to recruit and retain staff in an increasingly diverse and competitive labour market.
We will endeavour to keep you updated as soon as we hear more news about Brexit but in the meantime please do not hesitate to contact me should you have any concerns or comments.
By Virginia Perkins
Head of Human Resources