I'm looking forwards to Dragon's Eye tonight. I've seen all the trailers about the problems for residential care homes that are being caused by a cruel change in immigration rules. The consequences of last August's change, which insists that anyone working in a care home must be a 'senior' worker and be paid over £7 per hour are morally indefensible. Local authorities do not pay this much and it is simply uneconomic for any private sector care home to do so - because local authority fees are not high enough to cover this level of wage. It simply means that hundreds of Filipino workers, who are in Wales on five year work permits, are effectively being deported.
Now I hope Dragon's Eye doesn't try to claim this as some sort of exclusive story - because its nothing of the sort. This blog highlighted the issue on 21st November in some detail under the heading 'Be tough but also be Fair'. ( You'll have to scroll down because I don't know how to select a single post!) The reason that I know about this issue is that I'm Chair of the Welsh Advisory Board of the European Care Group, the company which has been interviewed for Dragon's Eye tonight. I have to admit that I had no idea this issue was being covered until I saw the six-o-clock news. It is a very important issue and its a real shame it wasn't picked up three weeks ago.
UPDATE; All the anger and sadness I felt when I posted on November 21st returned tonight, and with a vengeance, as I watched the interviews on Dragon's Eye. I did think that Keith Best was very good, and poured scorn on the shameful behaviour of the current Labour Government - just as I thought Chris Ruane was unreasonable to expect the care home sector to run its operations at a loss.