https://www.theguardian.com/uk-news/201 ... ome-office
>>>>>>>The second whistleblower comes from inside the Family and Human Rights Unit (FHRU), a department inside the UKVI which focuses on visas for spouses and parents of British and EU nationals
. They describe a similar state of constant crisis: “We currently have staff who are trained for one week before doing live cases. There is a high turnover (in the unit), staff are leaving and coming every week,” they said.
FHRU cases are streamed into three tiers according to their complexity, but junior administrators are regularly given more complex cases reserved for managers, the source said.
“Caseworkers will make poor decisions because of lack of training, support and mentoring from experienced caseworkers. This in turns creates a bigger workload for post-decision casework,” they said.
The backlog, said the source, is enormous. “We have 49,000 works in progress, which our senior management team has committed to get down to 12,000 by April 2018. There is currently up to an 18-month delay on FHRU cases, because they are not subject to a service standard,” they added.
“On my team, we are seeing a shocking increase of complaints and MP enquiries questioning the delay. We are just told to give standard lines.”
Mike Jones, Group Secretary for PCS, the union for Home Office employees, has canvassed his members and has found both whistleblowers’ comments to be “correct”.
“PCS have repeatedly raised concerns with the Home Office around a lack of staffing and resources within caseworking areas,” he said. “We are already seeing excessive amounts of overtime being worked due to insufficient staff to deal with work volumes.”
The Home Office has disputed the claims of both whistleblowers. Regarding the UKVI allegations, a spokesperson said: “Each application is dealt with on its individual merits. Standard overseas visa applications are prioritised on the facts of the case and not based on profit.”