128.In this report, we have examined the capacity of the Home Office to deliver new immigration processes to support the UK’s decision to leave the European Union. We have found that many existing processes are under strain, and under-resourced. We were told that pressure on staff in the immigration directorates is considerable, that it is contributing to high turnover rates and that poor decisions are being made as a result. The Home Office is recruiting more staff but we believe that the planned recruitment appears insufficient in scale to alleviate existing burdens let alone provide the resources required to cope with the increased workload and challenge that Brexit will bring.
129.We conclude that the Home Office needs rapid action to improve delivery across the existing immigration system in advance of any Brexit changes, urgent clarity about what the Government intends for EEA nationals’ registration and immigration, so that it can be scrutinised and debated before implementation, and a serious and properly resourced implementation plan for all three immigration directorates, with a realistic timetable for change.
130.We find the Government’s delays to the promised White Paper, and the lack of any timetable for resolving questions about registration and transition, to be completely unacceptable. These delays risk not only making it impossible to deliver on time, but also distracting UKVI, Border Force and Immigration Enforcement from their wider vital work on immigration and border security.
9 February 2018