Top legal brains go head-to-head over UK Care Workers/Immigration Cap fight
The Judicial Review over the immigration cap has got two of the best legal wizards in Britain leading the fight as the English Community Care Association (ECCA) takes on the government over reducing migrants from outside the EU; making it more interesting is that they are on opposing sides in London's High Court on Wednesday 15th December for the three day hearing.
Hugh Southey QC (Top photo) is leading the team on behalf of ECCA and has an impressive pedigree. Taking on the government and beating them is all in a days work for him. He specialises in immigration and human rights cases as well as criminal law. Solicitors like instructing him because besides winning cases on a regular basis, a capacity for hard work and an excellent legal mind means his success rate is high and he delivers results on time.
Southey operates from Tooks Chambers, which is headed by the legendary Michael Mansfield QC, a set of chambers noted for tweaking the nose of the government on several occasions. All the flaws in the Home Office's immigration cap, and in particular the procedures behind it, will be analysed by Southey and torn to shreds.
Leading the team representing the Home Office is Jonathan Swift QC (Lower photo), who is very unusual in that he is also a Treasury Devil (only one of two in the country). Treasury Devils are traditionally highly competent barristers who are appointed to act for the Treasury Solicitor (the government) while retaining their independence. Becoming Queens Counsel (QC) is the pinnacle of the Bar, roughly equivalent to that of becoming a consultant in the medical profession. However, being appointed Treasury Devil normally precludes being a QC, although traditionally seen as a more prestigious appointment than that of QC.
Swift operates from 11 Kings Bench Walk Chambers which has a reputation of taking only the top level of barristers. Fomer Prime Minister Tony Blair was there, and it was founded by a former Lord Chancellor.
If this were a boxing match, the odds would be extremely difficult to assess. What makes it even more interesting as a case, especially for Filipino care workers, is that the hearing is to be in front of Appeal Court judges, so that a flamboyant and theatrical presentation which might sway a jury will cut no ice.
Both legal teams are being led by top heavyweights, who know how to land killer punches. Who wins will have a dramatic effect. If ECCA win, it will throw the government's policy on the immigration cap into chaos. If the government win, Filipino care workers may never enter the UK after 2011.
Martin Green, chief executive of ECCA (above), has previously stated that most care home operators in this country prefer Filipino care workers because of their attitude. In this matter he is adamant that the government have not only got it wrong in the way they have gone about implementing the cap, especially in the way it pertains to care workers, but that full implementation of this cap would put at risk many care homes in this country.
It is unusual for a body representing employers to be fighting what on the face of it seems purely a matter on behalf of the employees, but this is considered by him to be of such a serious concern that the survival of many care homes is under threat.
ECCA STATEMENT ON THE JUDICIAL REVIEW
HIGH COURT BATTLE OVER CARE WORKERS' IMMIGRATION CAP
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