After announcing three categories for family reunification back in May (that very few families actually qualified for) the Immigration Minister further restricted category 3, the ‘highly skilled’ category so that 90% of applications would be declined. Now those highly skilled people are giving up and leaving in droves. This is the story of Craig Hurn, an engineer who is leaving New Zealand at a time when we are desperately short of engineers. The attitude of this Government has been – why use MIQ space to reunite split families when we can bring in people to grow our economy (like Lion King Dancers )?
My argument has always been: A. Reuniting families is the RIGHT THING TO DO from the perspective of just being good humans; and B. If we don’t reunite families, our skilled migrants will leave and we will have to replace them with new migrants (and their families!) With a critical shortage of staff in the labour market, it is totally incompetent not to reunite families to keep the amazing skilled people we have here in New Zealand.