Minimum Income Requirement
I believe we need rules on bringing spouses from abroad into this country and on family reunion. A balance must be struck between the interests of those who want to bring their spouse to the UK and the interests of the wider UK community.
The Supreme Court has upheld the lawfulness of the minimum income requirement for spouse visas, which has prevented the taxpayer paying more and has helped to promote integration. The Supreme Court also agreed that a fair balance is currently being struck between those wishing to sponsor a spouse to settle in the UK and of the wider community.
That said, the Home Secretary has said that these rules will be kept under review and this question will form part of the Government’s approach to our new immigration regime when it is implemented in January 2021.
Support for Trafficked Children
Thank you for contacting me about providing support for trafficked children.
We must tackle every form of modern slavery, including human trafficking. It is welcome news that Ministers have secured commitments from other governments and institutions, including the United Nations, the Commonwealth and the EU, to tackle modern slavery, and has successfully lobbied for the establishment of the first ever UN Sustainable Development Goal to end modern slavery. The Government is also working bilaterally with priority countries to deepen law enforcement cooperation.
Guardians provide an additional source of advice and support for all trafficked children. A key part of the role includes one-to-one support for those children who lack a figure of parental responsibility for them in the UK. The ICTG regional practice co-ordinator works alongside statutory bodies such as our police, social workers and the wider Criminal Justice System to build a multi-agency approach to the safeguarding of these vulnerable children.
In 2018, the Home Office announced a review of the Modern Slavery Act, which considered the provisions in the Act regarding Independent Child Trafficking Advocates. You may be pleased to know that in line with the review’s recommendations, the Advocates have been recently renamed Independent Child Trafficking Guardians (ICTGs).
The Government remains committed to rolling out guardians nationally so that more and more children are able to access their rights.