Personal Immigration

Mixed reactions to Priti Patel’s appointment as Home Secretary

The appointment of Priti Patel to the position of Home Secretary has elicited both fanfares and commotion among various factions.

The committed free marketer and ardent supporter of Brexit previously declared controversial support on sensitive issues in criminal justice. She famously supported the death penalty and at one time was forced to resign from the cabinet after engaging the Israeli government in unauthorised talks.

With the new Prime Minister, Boris Johnson committed to delivering Brexit by the end of October; Ms. Patel faces a crucial job in the immigration department. There is a need to reshape the system in preparation for a restricted movement that is aimed at controlling the influx of migrants.

Those opposed to her appointment argue that she is aggressive and has a notorious stance on some sensitive issues. Her voting record shows that she is a strong supporter of a strict asylum system and tough immigration rules enforcement.

The appointment is a concern for many employers, especially in construction and hospitality, who rely on migrants to fill skill gaps in the UK. Upon her appointment, she reiterated that employers should not automatically rely on cheap foreign labour but instead invest in domestic training.

There have also been concerns about her radical nature and uncompromising politics. People opposed to the appointment believe that her judgements are instinctive rather than intellectual and would hinder her from effectively discharging her duties. Human rights groups are worried about her regressive stance on hostile and controversial social issues.

However, her allies believe that she is best suited for the job and is likely to be driven by delivery rather than personal ideologies. They expect her to be pragmatic and run a very open Home Office that will reform the immigration system for the better. They argue that Ms. Patel is well placed to deliver progressive immigration policies.

As a daughter of Ugandan Asian immigrants, they see her as the most appropriate candidate who will reform the system with balanced border policies. The reforms, they believe, will acknowledge the benefits of immigration as well as the discriminate the people allowed in the country.

Being a Johnson loyalist, Patel is certainly going to be focused on helping him initiate his policies using amnesty or even unpopular methods.

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