The National Union of Students (NUS) today (Tuesday) called on the government to urgently rethink its position on removing international students from net migration figures.
The government had rejected the call in its long-delayed response to the September 2012 report from the Business, Innovation and Skills Select which established a strongly evidenced case across party lines for removing international students from net migration figures.
The Select Committee’s Chairman Adrian Bailey MP has already branded today’s government’s response as “not acceptable” and has convened a meeting tomorrow to scrutinise the response.
Today’s government response comes a month after five select committee chairmen wrote to Prime Minister David Cameron urging him to remove overseas student numbers from migration targets*.
In response, NUS has launched a new campaign asking students to ‘Give the Home Office the Yellow Card’ by writing to Home Secretary, Theresa May and calling on her to stop treating international students like a political football.
Daniel Stevens, NUS International Students Officer:
“Since taking office the coalition government have continually treated international students as a political football so now we’re asking people to contact the Home Office and give them the yellow card.
“The cross-party case for changing international student visas policy is overwhelming and has been backed by five committees. The government must urgently follow the lead of Australia and the United States and recognise that international students should not be included in net migration figures.
“We have worked with universities, business leaders and politicians of all parties to build a case for policy change.
“The Government must now listen to experts and reverse their position before further damage is done to both the UK’s global standing, the vibrancy of our campuses and the prospect of economic recovery.”
NUS (National Union of Students) is a voluntary membership organisation which makes a real difference to the lives of students and its member students' unions.
We are a confederation of 600 students' unions, amounting to more than 95 per cent of all higher and further education unions in the UK. Through our member students' unions, we represent the interests of more than seven million students.