4 September 2012
GREEN PARTY CALLS FOR AMNESTY FOR STUDENTS OF LONDON METROPOLITAN UNIVERSITY
The Green Party is opposed to the action of the UK Border Agency in removing the right of London Metropolitan University to accept foreign students(1). Stuart Jeffery, Policy Coordinator on the Green Party National Executive, comments:
“The Government’s action in preventing London Metropolitan University from taking foreign students will rebound negatively upon the UK’s universities. Because the Government has made getting a visa far more difficult by creating a demanding process, foreign student visa applications have already dropped 21% June 2011-June 2012 (2). London Met’s 2700 foreign students are now struggling to find places to start or to continue studying. The Government has made Universities very dependent upon foreign student income: it is currently about 32% of University income from fees(3).
“The Green Party supports the calls for an amnesty for the students affected. It is also essential that foreign students be taken out of the migration statistics since they do not have permanent right to remain in this country.
“This case is already being reported abroad (4). There can be little doubt that potential foreign students, worth about £12.5 billion to the UK economy, will be deterred from applying to the UK in future. The Green Party is concerned about the viability of courses and the impact upon jobs in universities sector. Universities have neither the staff nor the resources to act as miniature versions of the UK Border Agency, which is constantly changing rules it uses. The UK should aspire to be a world leader in education, yet this atrocious move will severely damage our international reputation."
FURTHER INFORMATION: Zoe Hall 0207 549 0315