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Monday, August 8, 2022

Tory Hypocrisy Blasted Over Brexit Crisis in Scottish Food and Drinks Sector

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Alister Jack (pictured) hosts food even while Westminster government refuses to fix workforce catastrophe the caused.

The SNP has accused Alister Jack of outrageous hypocrisy for hosting a Scottish food industry event today while his UK Government refuses to change its post-Brexit immigration policy which is wreaking havoc on our food and hospitality sectors.

Publicising the Taste of Scotland event, the Scots Secretary boasted “the UK Government is equipping Scottish firms with the tools they need to take advantage of new export opportunities opening up around the globe.”

But an exchange of letters between SNP MSP Jim Fairlie and the UK Government exposes the harsh reality that the UK Government has no intention of modifying its disastrous post-Brexit immigration policy to help struggling businesses.

Perthshire South and Kinross-shire MSP Mr Fairlie wrote to the Home Secretary about the shortage of labour affecting businesses across his constituency – and all across Scotland – since Brexit.

The UK Government, in its response to Mr Fairlie, admitted jobs like waiters, meat processors and delivery drivers did not meet the threshold for a skilled worker visa and they have no intention of changing the rules.

The Minister for Safe and Legal Migration callously suggested “some businesses will need to adjust…rather than seeing immigration as the go to solution.”

Now, the SNP is again demanding that if the Westminster Tories won’t fix the Brexit catastrophe they created then they should stand aside and give the Scottish Government powers over immigration to safeguard Scottish businesses and livelihoods.

Commenting, SNP MSP Jim Fairlie said:

“Tory hypocrisy knows no bounds.

“Alister Jack and his Conservative colleagues are all too happy to glad-hand at events like this while doing absolutely nothing to address the very real hardships their Brexit has caused to our food and hospitality sectors.

“If Alister Jack wants to show support for the Scottish food and drink industry he would use the platform of this event to outline exactly how he will personally intervene to address the critical labour shortages.

“But I won’t hold my breath.

“It is staggering the Tory UK Government admits Brexit has created this problem but will do absolutely nothing to put it right.

“Instead, they arrogantly expect businesses to fix the mess they made.

“Once again we see the Tories happily throwing businesses under their Brexit bus by refusing to change their hostile immigration policy.

“Businesses in my constituency need action now.

“If Westminster is not willing to fix this issue, then they should give Holyrood powers over immigration so we can take the action needed to let our world-class businesses thrive as they should.”

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