A letter sent to UK Home Secretary Priti Patel has urged the Cabinet Minister to offer an “immediate amnesty” to undocumented workers. The letter has been sent by the Bangladesh Caterer’s Association and comes in the wake of COVID-19 and the chaos it’s brought to the UK hospitality industry.
The letter argues that undocumented workers could provide essential support to the industry which is already short-handed as a result of the virus. It states that such workers could have vital knowledge, and experience, which could be essential in keeping the industry on its feet, especially curry houses and restaurants serving Asian cuisine.
Since 2005 the UK food industry has been experiencing what’s known as the ‘Curry Crisis’. This represents a shortage of skilled cooks that has steadily increased over the years. Now with the added pressure of coronavirus, things are more dire than ever.
The letter warns that “extraordinary times, require extraordinary measures” – and that such undocumented workers already have no access to the NHS, so arguments that use that as a reason are flawed.
It also argued that “Prime Minister Johnson himself has advocated the idea of an amnesty for illegal migrants on numerous occasions and has been in favour of this idea for some time.”
So far, the Bangladesh Caterer’s Association has not received a response.