UK general election 2019

Most of the political parties standing for election in the 2019 general election have published their manifestos.

We have summarised key immigration and Brexit policies of relevance to international, EEA and Swiss students. For full information, please read the manifestos themselves, all linked to in the table below.

 Party
 International students                                          
 EU / Brexit

Alliance Party

Exempt international students from being counted as migrants, introduce a 2-year visa for students to work after graduation. Seek to end hostile environment

People’s Vote with option to remain in EU

Brexit Party 

Reduce annual immigration, introduce fair points system blind to ethnic origin.

Clean-Break Brexit. No extended ‘transition period’


Conservative Party
Scottish Conservatives  Welsh Conservatives

Australian style points-based system. Student visa will allow students to stay on to apply for work here after they graduate. Increase the health surcharge (£625 pa)

EU citizens who came to the UK before Brexit may stay. New immigration system will mean people coming from the EU will only be able to access unemployment, housing, and child benefit after five years, new arrivals to contribute to funding of the NHS

Democratic Unionist Party 

UK should develop a points-based immigration system

Want Brexit deal but no borders in the Irish Sea

Green Party
Scottish Greens

End the hostile environment. Guarantee access to public services such as the police, health and education without fear of being subject to immigration enforcement. Scrap health charging

People’s Vote. Guarantee full rights of EU citizens and families living in the UK, including the right to automatic settled status

Independent Group for Change 

Foreign students welcomed as contribute and enrich university communities and economy

Put question of Brexit back to the people for a final say, campaigning for UK to remain in the EU

Labour
Scottish Labour    Welsh Labour

Scrap 2014 Immigration Act [‘hostile environment’]. 2-year post-study work offer (Scottish Labour)

Give people the final say on Brexit. End uncertainty of EU settlement scheme by  granting automatic right to stay in the UK

Liberal Democrats      Scottish Lib Dems

Scrap hostile environment. Move policy-making on work permits and student visas into Departments for Business and Education respectively. Create 2-year visa for students to work after graduation

Will protect world-leading higher education sector by stopping Brexit

Plaid Cymru

International students must be taken out of net migration targets

Wales to stay inside EU. Change Settled Status application system into registration system, ensuring all EU citizens resident in UK before exit day have right of permanent residence.

Scottish National Party

Post-study work visa. Will seek devolution of immigration powers and introduction of a Scottish Visa

Second EU referendum with Remain on ballot paper. Declaratory system with proof of status, instead of EU settlement scheme. Campaign for extension to no-deal 3-year ‘Temporary Leave to Remain’ scheme, which discriminates against students in Scotland

UK Independence Party

Temporary immigration for students will be both strictly controlled and time-limited. Students will be expected to possess private health insurance as a condition of entry to the UK (unless covered by a reciprocal medical treatment agreement)

UKIP stands for a complete and total withdrawal from the European Union

The following parties have also published their manifestos and pledges: People before ProfitSinn Féin, Socialist Democratic Labour Party, Ulster Unionist Party


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