(Photo by DANIEL LEAL-OLIVAS/AFP via Getty Images)
MIGRANTS who breach rules and overstay in the UK after their visa expires will be prevented from accessing benefits, services and work under the new immigration plan announced on Monday (24).
A ‘digital visa’ will give ministers real-time data on a person’s immigration status and enable the government and departments to know whether a person is “in” or “out” of the UK at any given point in time.
Under the plan, access to benefits such as the NHS will stop if migrants overstay their visas. It will also permit sharing of information across government departments so migrants can access public services such as the NHS.
Similarly, job applicants will no longer be required to prove their status as employers would already have access to the information.
“The use of automation to generate or update a digital status from a border crossing outcome event will enable the ability to accurately calculate and share a person’s status with third parties and other government departments that give access to benefits, services and work to those who are eligible,” the new immigration plan document read.
“It will also deny them to those here illegally or without the necessary entitlements, reducing the major pull factors for illegal migration.”
Home secretary Priti Patel said, “Our new fully digital border will provide the ability to count people in and count people out of the country.”
“We will have a far clearer picture of who is here and whether they should be – and will act when they are not,” she said.
Work towards a digital system for immigration status will “reduce costs and improve border security by reducing the possibility of forgery or theft” of identity documents.