And non-EU staff?
A UK government pilot scheme running through November and December has allowed university staff from the European Union to apply for settled status in return for a fee of £65 per person (“Survey finds wide variation in UK university support for EU staff”, News, 20 December).
However, I would argue that covering EU settlement costs and not covering the costs of non-EU Tier 2 visa renewals and Indefinite Leave to Remain applications is discriminatory. It implies that one set of employees is worth supporting while another class is not.
Ultimately, the £65 fee is a panic-related Band-Aid to retain current staff. New EU staff coming in will soon discover that when it comes to paying for visas and visa renewals, institutional support will fall away quickly because this will add hundreds of thousands of pounds to university human resource budgets.
The University of Leeds (not mentioned in the article) has shown tremendous foresight in this regard, not only covering Tier 2 visa renewals but also ILR costs for its non-EU staff and granting zero-interest loans to cover any additional costs. This removes a huge disincentive to staff relocating to the UK and also shows very forward thinking in ensuring that all staff are treated equally regardless of where they happen to come from.
Via timeshighereducation.com Opinion, page 30