Scottish Greens call for end to cruel ‘love tax’ visa laws

The Home Office's minimum income requirements are punitive, cruel and split up families.

The Home Office must stop punishing families with punitive and cruel barriers like the “love tax” minimum income requirements, say the Scottish Greens.

Speaking ahead of a general election campaign event in Glasgow, the party’s co-leader, Patrick Harvie, called for an immediate removal of all income requirements on spousal visas, allowing families to live together.

Mr Harvie said: “The Home Office’s minimum income requirements are punitive and cruel. They are a tax on love that are splitting up families and spreading fear, anxiety and heartbreak to people all over the UK.

“Everyone has a right to a family life and to be with the people they love.

“What message does it send when we are shutting the door on people based on their income? There is no low that this Tory government won’t sink to in its shameful efforts to penalise, punish and hurt our migrant communities.

“The Tories are playing cynical games with people’s lives and wellbeing and splitting up families as part of a reactionary and inward-looking Tory vision that treats people’s lives and wellbeing as political pawns.”

Mr Harvie also reaffirmed his party’s commitment to building an independent Scotland in the European Union.

He added: “When Scotland was pulled out of Europe it was a dark day. Our economy has suffered, but a lot of the worst impacts have been felt by migrant communities across our country who have been thrown onto the front line of a Tory culture war. I don’t believe that this is the kind of society we want to be.

“The Tories won’t reverse Brexit and nor will Labour. It is clear that the best way for us to build a better and more inclusive future as a modern European country is with the powers of independence.”