The immigration settings have been modified to give way and allow specialist doctors, nurses, and midwives to have immediate residency. Immigration Minister Michael Wood has announced the modification with urgency in mind. It has been known to many that the previous statements from the government faced backlash, which prompted the government to rethink its stance regarding the issue.
The mandate will take effect on December 15, allowing all said selected workers to enter the country. In response to workers already practicing in the country, they will be issuing a specific purpose work visa, which will take effect for up to 3 years. The said visa will benefit almost 2500 workers. A post-study work visa will also be issued to about 1800 workers, which is only valid for 12 months.
More professions are being pushed to be added to the green list, like teachers, mechanics, drain layers, etc.
More things are in the store for the industry, like the employer accreditation, which will have an extension for those applying in July next year. This extension means that employers will have two years of accreditation. In line with this, Wood clarified that requirements for the accreditation would not be extended. This has been proposed recently, but it didn’t get enough support.
Wood also made a statement regarding all these moves they are making to improve many jobs in the country. According to him, this is to keep up with the globally competitive environment; that’s why they are expanding their Green List settings and catering to more professions, preferably those in the healthcare, construction, and education sectors.
To add to that, Wood also stated that they were able to onboard 3474 nurses ever since the pandemic, to which he said that the number itself is already impressive, but the country still needs to make more efforts to attract more nurses so that they will choose New Zealand over another country to work with.
The changes to the green list settings are welcome, despite the government facing immediate backlash from the public for not including nurses on the green list criteria after the immigration reset last May.
Wood also stated that the new settings that they have brewed would benefit not only the workers but also New Zealand since they will be able to identify and optimize their labour approach, whether they need to enforce more programs or dial back down to make sure that all workers are being taken care of.