On 4 November 2020, the States Assembly approved P.120/2020 Migration and Population Data
(as amended) lodged by Deputy Jess Perchard. The proposition committed the Council of Ministers to bringing forward a Migration Policy for debate by the States Assembly.
This work has been subject to a phased approach and on 3 March 2021 the States Assembly approved P.137/2020 – Migration Control Policy
(as amended) lodged by the Council of Ministers. The proposition, based on the findings and recommendations of the Migration Policy Development Board
report, approved outline changes to the Control of Housing and Work (Jersey) Law 2012 to provide more responsive controls to migrations and paved the way for amendments to be made to that law. P.137/2020 was subject to a review by this Panel culminating in a report: S.R.6/2021 – Migration Control Policy (Phase 1)
. Five of the nine recommendations made by the Panel were accepted with a two considered for acceptance.
In addition to the migration controls, the Chief Minister was tasked with the development of a separate but associated common population policy for Jersey.
An in-committee debate was held on 24 March 2021 to seek the Assembly’s views on the themes that would be considered important in formulating a population policy. The analysis of that debate was presented in R.99/2021 – States Assembly In-Committee debate 24th March 2021 Analysis
. In the period since the in-committee debate the Government of Jersey has also conducted a public consultation on population policy and themes.
Throughout the Phase 1 review and the subsequent hearings with the Assistant Chief Minister and Officers in the lead up to the presentation of the Population Policy (and of the forthcoming CHWL amendments) fundamental concerns have been:
- the accuracy and availability of the necessary data to form a policy
- the ongoing impact on industry and all employers of both Brexit and the Covid-19 pandemic
- the rights of workers who come to live and work in Jersey.
This review focused on P.116/2021 Common Population Policy. If it is required, a second review will be launched following the lodging of the Control of Housing and Work Law amendments which will be the subject of a separate scoping document.