By Own Correspondent
THE first health and social care Indaba for 2024 will be held in Manchester early next month and comes at a time the sector is under increasing pressure as dozens of businesses lose their licenses to recruit overseas workers.
According to the organisers, the gathering, which is the ninth in the ongoing series, will be addressed by Councillor Yasmine Dar, the Lord Mayor of the City of Manchester.
The meeting follows revelations that dozens of health and social care businesses had had their Skilled Worker Sponsor Licences revoked.
“While some of these providers may well have breached the rules around sponsor licences unintentionally, the consequences will be far-reaching,” said law firm RWK Goodman which submitted a freedom of information request to the UK Home Office over the issue.
“Not only will these providers have been forced to dismiss all the overseas workers they were sponsoring, but their businesses would have faced fines and considerable reputational damage.”
Some of the reasons for revocation of licences include failure to report changes to sponsored workers, failure to keep records, failure to conduct right-to-work checks as well as failure to comply with immigration laws.
Commenting on the licence revocations, Wilson Mathe who represents organisers of the Indabas said; “We cannot just sit back and watch them take our licenses … due to compliance and close our businesses.
“This is the time to come together under one umbrella and show them we are not going anywhere.
“If they revoke your licence, it’s not the end of the world, let’s come out and the staff so that we can make a plan.”
Meanwhile, Mathe reflected on the impact of the meet and greet sessions since they were launched.
“We have managed to attract upcoming and prospective health and social care providers,” he said.
“We have managed to cultivate several platforms that support those that want to establish their businesses by providing coaching, mentoring just to name a few.
“Our goals and vision now are geared towards creating a united network of providers with the sole purpose of creating better standards of practice of the members in our group.”
He added; “This has also seen the commencement of the Health and Social Care Providers Network (HSCPN).
“(Members) can enjoy our resources curated by industry professionals who are dedicating themselves to raising the best practices standards for all our members.
“This supports all members with the Domiciliary Care, Supported Living, Supported Accommodation, Children’s Services and Recruitment agencies. Members of this group are growing as we speak with providers finding value in what we do.”