The immigrant qualifications issue

ID2020 got me thinking about immigrants, not just refugees. There’s a swathe of qualified migrants that move from the poor to the rich world every year. But when they do, their qualifications cannot be carried. 

Take my mother as an example. She left the Philippines in the 1980s, having gained qualifications as a lab technician. She loved the job. However, the U.K. gave her qualifications no recognition; they simply were not of an equivalent standing here. She went into menial work in hospitality; she had a fabulous time serving the glitterati in London’s poshest hotels but her brain was wasted on both her home country and that which she settled in. 

I can turn to the cleaner next. She recently migrated from Bulgaria, where she was a qualified counsellor. She worked with disturbed children in schools. A worthy career and one which would enrich her host country. However, again she was stripped of this qualification upon entry to the U.K. which gives her Bulgarian certificates no recognition. 

On one hand, it is great that we have an influx of migrants willing to take on low-skilled jobs which the locals have long since turned their noses up at. But it highlights the issue of brain drain, which is not taken advantage of by the host country. This untapped talent is wasted, when a simple exam in the host country would suffice to certify these individuals. The benefit to the host country would outweigh the cost and the uplift on tax contributions would in itself be a hefty payback. 

The untapped talent of migrants is a concern that not many share and the progress of mankind is hindered significantly by such wastage. I write about an Indian mathematician in an upcoming publication who demonstrates this. Stay tuned, as his story will shock and shame all of Britain. 

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