MP claims UK law separates families
March 15, 2016 58 comments
A “discriminatory” British immigration law is responsible for splitting up loving families, a Welsh politician has claimed.
This week Plaid Cymru MP Liz Saville-Roberts said that the wage requirement for Britons to bring their foreign spouses to the country “prejudices against” those who are less well off.
Under rules introduced in 2012, a British citizen needs to prove that they earn at least £18,600 per year or have savings of at least £62,500 before their partner can apply for a spousal visa. The law has been criticised by campaigners like the Migrants’ Rights Network, who claimed the financial requirement meant half of all Britons could not afford to live with a foreign partner.
The issue was brought to Saville-Roberts’ attention by one of her Dwyfor Meirionnydd constituents in north-west Wales. Hailey Aldirmaz married a Turkish man who was subsequently denied a spousal visa. The Home Office told Mrs Aldirmaz, a trainee teaching assistant, that she did not meet the financial requirement for her husband to enter the country.
Speaking to BBC Radio Wales’ Good Morning Wales show on Tuesday morning, Saville-Roberts said that this case involved “people who are working not on benefits” and have a “loving marriage”. The situation was affecting the couple’s children, she added, and there should be other ways to establish when people are in a genuine marriage. She pledged to raise Mrs Aldirmaz’s predicament in the House of Commons.
This case is not unique. Last year, the Children’s Commissioner for England claimed that the wage requirement had separated as many as 15,000 children from one of their parents.
Photo of Liz Saville-Roberts courtesy of Plaid Cymru via Flickr
March 15, 2016
Categories: Family Life