Coffee House

What the government must do to prepare for Romanian and Bulgarian migrants

22 February 2013

5:13 PM

22 February 2013

5:13 PM

Ministers and MPs are nervous about a mass influx of Romanian and Bulgarian migrants putting the benefit system under strain next year. But ministers should beware, and learn from the political mistakes of the past. The failure to predict the scale of post-2004 migration to the UK from the EU caused major political problems for the Labour government. The public were left with the impression that the government was not in control of immigration and that Labour were contemptuous of public views and that they were even deliberately misleading them.

The Conservatives have less to worry about on the second point – polling suggests the public broadly support them on immigration – but they have plenty to worry about on the first. People are fast losing confidence that the Coalition can deliver on their promises, and critical reports continue to highlight institutional and administrative failings in the immigration system.

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In this context the decision by the Prime Minister and other Conservatives to play up public fears about the likely impacts of Romanian and Bulgarian immigration, while at the same time refusing to make predictions about its scale, risks reinforcing a public view that the Government shares their concerns but is not on top of the numbers. They should stop fanning the flames of public concern because 2014 will not be a repeat of 2004, not least because the UK has imposed the maximum transitional controls on migration from Romania and Bulgaria. Even in the years after 2004, when EU migration levels were very high, the UK economy proved flexible enough to absorb newcomers without major impacts on other workers. EU migrants make a substantial net contribution to the Treasury’s coffers, and are much less likely than British-born people to claim out-of-work benefits.

Crucially though, ministers also need to act now to make sure that the UK is ready to respond to whatever changes to migration flows do occur next year – it is perfectly possible to make good policy in the face of uncertainty. That means equipping local authorities to react quickly to local population changes, to make sure that there is not undue pressure on school places and other local services. It means working with farmers who currently rely on Bulgarian and Romanian fruit pickers to make sure that they can get their crops in if their workers abandon them work in other sectors. It means proactively supporting groups in the UK who are most vulnerable to labour market impacts (for example by improving the training and jobs offer for young unemployed people).

The Conservatives set themselves a political trap in opposition when they set a benchmark for Labour of predicting the unpredictable after 2004. Both parties should learn from their own, and each other’s, mistakes in the run up to 2014.

Sarah Mulley is Associate Director at IPPR

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Show comments
  • Razvan Stefan

    i am wondering.. everyone says that there would be 29 millions of Romanians and Bulgarians coming in the UK. Out of curiosity, the Romania’s population is 19 millions people. At the same time, Bulgaria’s population is 7 Million people.. 19+7= 26 which leaves us with 26 millions people.. so i am just wondering..DO YOU BELIEVE THAT THIS COUNTRIES WOULD BECOME EMPTY JUST TO COME IN ENGLAND?…. Be serious…and do some Maths and have a read before all these publications..

  • margaret benjamin

    The Country is at an all time low Business is not good don’t know the figures but each week more companies are closing down,Yes we know the benefit of migrant workers,but sorry to say this is your more cheap labour and six to a house because the wages are rubbish or cant afford the rent.We are overrun with migrants/ Is this the end of Britain as we KNEW IT !!! the face of it has already changed a lot. how long can we leave this door open for other countries to just walk in,NO im not racist Im not surprised other countries get the impression Briton is wealthy . If this Government does not do something about the bedroom tax it will have a riot on its hand,and they wonder why the far right is gaining ground people start getting resentful ! Now the real economic migrants are yes a contribution but sadly lots of them have only to wait a year before they can claim benefit . Cameron is a waste of space he is not prime minister material He speaks about what he will do in and after the next General election well you wont get back in if their were a snap election you would not see him again.Welfare reform is fine but his heavy handedness is on the brink of causing multiple problems misery people being evicted for none payment of rents Cameron really has hit the poor./less well off souring Gas/electric prices he has even taken the State Pension away from Women that should not have happened. Overall the Country is going to the dogs and we need politicians with redeeming qualities not this clown.

    • Newsbot9

      Keep on blaming the Other for your problems, like 1930’s Germany did.

      You’re a racist and a bigot. The problem with business is a Tory government dead-set on crashing it. You’re cheering Cameron on, glorying in the economic crash.

      • margaret benjamin

        No im Jewish but not a racist as you may think.I speak as I find.

        • Newsbot9

          Ah right, you’re using linear “logic” to support the far right against “other” Jews. Got it.

          Keep on trying to drive us from this country!

          • margaret benjamin

            Don’t be ridiculous Its also the way things are rarther than how they should be,The UK is always criticising Israel instead of supporting them the British think its their business to go around telling everyone else what to do!

            • Newsbot9

              Hardly alone in that – for instance, your calling the status quo “the way things are”, when it’s a political setup…

        • Grrr8

          “We are overrun with migrants/ Is this the end of Britain as we KNEW IT !!!” – pretty sure this is what they said about the Jews in the East End and the Jews who sought refuge here in the late 1930.

          I’m sure those who argued against giving refuge to the Jews and were thus accused of racism said, “not a racist as you may think.I speak as I find.”

          Always a bit sad to see a Jew arguing for walls to be put up and people to be kept out, whether in London or Jerusalem.

          • margaret benjamin

            Oh you don’t mind the country being overrun then when times are hard and about to get worse especially for the less well off being taxed for extra bedrooms! This is not about refuge its about this open door policy and you know it.How long can Briton keep hosting migrants from Europe their is no money in this for the Government and its not economic growth. the 1930 was very different people had nothing the Jewish communities always worked hard so they were and are prosperous not waiting for twelve months then going on welfare! Do tell me were is your office.

            • Grrr8

              I think you need to start questioning what you “know”. Your post is a pack of lies and half-truths. Your community was given refuge and prospered. You look ugly when you seek to kick the ladder out from those who want the same opportunity for a better life. Romanians and Bulgarians have that opportunity by law. And, I am delighted that there is nothing you can do to stop it.

              • margaret benjamin

                It makes you look a fool this isn’t about cheap labour whatever the nationality that isn’t the issue makes no difference if their Chinese or Japanese. Your missing the point its about the state of the nation, the economy the welfare reform the national heath service, schools were ever you look their is lack you don’t have to be a genius Your comments about your community and about walls going up stick in your throat does it. maybe you don’t like jews ! not about stopping it either its not been thought through . As for you bitterness is not good for your heath.

                • Grrr8

                  Ah the defence of some Jews pinned at the rapier’s edge in an argument: anti-semitism. I’ll just laugh that one off as a sign of your weak arguments.
                  I can assure you I’m not bitter. After all we are following the policies I support. What would I be bitter about? I think the bitterness is all with you. I suspect you feel you lack things in your life and need a target to direct your anger about this towards. Hence the soft targets of Romanians/ Bulgarians.
                  Your writing style (poor grammar, strange spelling, absence of periods/ apostrophes) makes me think that you are either disabled or poorly educated. Want to enlighten us?

                • margaret benjamin

                  SHMUCK

                • Grrr8

                  I’ll take that as a ‘you concede the argument to me’.

                • margaret benjamin

                  You need the friends nobody on this blog agrees with you looser. You are wrong and how can I help it if im right! answers on a postcard. #####################################

                • Grrr8

                  Truly a post from the enlightened. Enjoy! 😉

  • http://twitter.com/Waltroon Walter Ellis

    I have rarely read an article on a “hot” topic in which so many words are expended in saying nothing of substance. Does the author have a point of view? If so, what is it? She seems to be saying, let’s get it right this time, Mr Cameron, without actually saying what it is that needs to be got right.

    • Grrr8

      That’s sort of my criticism as well. I do think she says what needs to be ‘got right’ i.e. make sure there is infrastructure and resources for migrants. But she doesn’t cover this in any more detail. Nor does she touch on the ‘how’.

      • Daniel Maris

        Does she say how much the infrastructure costs? No. At, say, one new dwelling per 1.5 immigrants (remembering most are single) in London and the South East you are probably talking of 66,000 housing units for 100,000 per annum.

        So at the outset you need to find about 66,000 x £200,000 (difficult to get anywhere cheaper than that down South) = £13.2 billion. And that’s the liability from just one year and just one type of infrastructure (i.e. not including transport, hospitals and education).

        Of course we don’t stump that up in direct grants to the immigrants in one year but we do pay that sum (and more because of interest payments) through: taxes to fund councils and housing associations, increased house prices (housing costs have been rising in London despite the recession) paid by everyone due to decreased supply, and housing benefit.

        These huge housing costs are then follow by huge education costs as the young immigrants have families and come to rely on more welfare payments in terms of child benefit and income support.

        It’s an insane policy which is now dragging down the country’s economy measured when measured, correctly, on a per capita basis.

        • the viceroy’s gin

          …so it’s sort of similar to windmills then, eh?

  • LB

    EU migrants make a substantial net contribution to the Treasury’s coffers

    ==================

    A complete lie.

    The government spends 11K per person on average.

    The average migrant is not earning 40K per person, children included.

    • Newsbot9

      Keep ignoring the high paid workers. Don’t need no high skill workers in your dumbocracy.

    • Grrr8

      Do you keep the above stuff in a doc on your laptop to cut and paste into comments? You are like a broken record on this. Maybe you were dropped on your head as a child, or this is a symptom of Aspergers?

  • Smithersjones2013

    Oh dear more drivel from the pro-immigration brigade. They really don’t understand the simplicity of the situation.

    People understand that the government has no control over immigration from Europe and every time this country is swamped with migrant labour taxpayers end up footing the bill (or the debt goes up). Beyond that all three establishment parties have been trashing the business community for various failings such as tax avoidance, profiteering (energy and and utilities), process failure (horse meat failure), rate fixing (energy and financial systems).

    On top of that flooding the employment market with cheap migrant labour only a stops the British unemployed who are increasingly being unfairly discriminated against by business bigots (foreigners work harder blah blah blah) from getting jobs and also depresses the whole wages market keeping potential earnings low whilst the cost of living keeps rising Businesses profit but wealth is increasingly not being cycled through the electorate who are being bypassed.

    So in summary, the electorate will not listen to Government overtures because the politicians reputations have been trashed and will not listen to Business overtures because the politicians have trashed their reputation as well and immigration just denies British workers jobs and better earnings and sucks up public services meaning permanent residents end up paying even more in taxes. Nothing is going to save the Government from significant criticism and loss of support for persisting with this insane situation of allowing uncontrolled immigration from Europe.

    Furthermore trolling out think tank stooges to tell us otherwise is pointless because think tanks are part of the parasite problem that has sunk this country so low in the first place!

    PS Oh and if foreigners don’t claim as many benefits it is likely because they do not know what they are entitled to. Ignorance of our welfare system is not a justification for continued uncontrolled immigration. Iin fact it is quite a cynical view and sadly the more one hears the desperate protestations from the pro-immigration brigade the more offensive their views become.

    • Newsbot9

      It’s very simple, yes. The choice is a British economy or not, and you’re on the “not” side.

      The Government’s study clearly shows that your myth about costs is untrue. Politicians like you are indeed liars.

      Keep on making excuses for the lower level of welfare among immigrants, your evasion is another good piece of political spin, a cynical attack on the poor again. You’re the one on the offensive, with your thugs.

  • Russell

    “The public were left with the impression that the government was not in
    control of immigration and that Labour were contemptuous of public views
    and that they were even deliberately misleading them.”

    What do mean left with the impression!!!!!!!!!

    No bloody impression about it, Labour DID lose control of immigration, were contemptuous of public views and deliberately mislead them.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100004981542519 Tom Tom

    There should be leaflets printed in Bulgarian and Romanian, and each LEA should train at least one teacher to speak Bulgarian. It is important that there be a BBC TV programme in Romanian and a News Bulletin in Bulgarian. There should be a new Cabinet Minister for Diversity who speaks either Romanian or Bulgarian.

    • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1296945479 John McClane

      One teacher per LEA to speak Bulgarian? Have you checked how many schools there are in each LEA? Have you checked how many schools there are in each LEA which are actually under LEA control?

      Bulgarian radio retransmits VOA news in Bulgaria in English. Bucharest & Sofia get BBC World in English on FM. But if you can get internet radio who’s going to listen to that?

      A minister who speaks Romanian or Bulgarian? I doubt we have a minister who can speak French.

      • Newsbot9

        You’ve been trolled.

  • Boudicca_Icenii

    This article is advocating appeasement.
    The Government should simply tell the EU that we are not allowing the UK to be flooded by hundreds of thousands of welfare-parasites from Romania and Bulgaria and we are unilaterally extending the transitional controls.
    Virtually no-one from Romania or Bulgaria will make a net contribution to the UK economy. They will be a drain on our welfare state and public services which they will never repay.
    But apart of that – I don’t want my country flooded with immigrants. I don’t want our green belt concreted over to provide housing for immigrants. I don’t want to walk around my local town in Surrey and continually hear foreign voices. The UK is full.
    Vote UKIP to get out of the EU and stop uncontrolled and uncontrollable mass immigration.

    • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1296945479 John McClane

      You should have spoken up earlier. You were probably too young to complain about the Jamaicans coming here. You didn’t complain about the French being able to come here, the Germans, the Danes, the Swedes, the Dutch. Nor the Spanish, Greeks and Portuguese when it was their turn. Or the Pakistanis, the Punjabis, the Gujeratis, the Bengalis, the Somalis, the East African Asians. Now you’re worried about a few thousand Romanians and Bulgarians. You’re worried about your town in Surrey. You should go to London. Or Boston, Lincolnshire. You think UKIP’s going to turn the tide?

      • Boudicca_Icenii

        I don’t have a problem with immigration from the Commonwealth, as long as we select who we need … not an open door for anyone to walk through.
        I know there are parts of the country which have been inundated by immigrants and are in a much worse position that my local town in Surry. But when a leafy Surrey town has a high percentage of foreign language being heard on the streets you know that the problem is getting out of control.
        It has to stop.

    • Newsbot9

      That’s right, vote UKIP to end trade agreements, to block Britain’s place in the world. To be a bigot and a racist. To be a parasite on this country.

      Go back to Hateland and stop attacking the UK. Stop whining because you see a black face occasionally. Your visa is up, illegal.

      • Boudicca_Icenii

        I don’t care what colour the immigrants are …. this country is full. it doesn’t matter whether they are white, black, brown, yellow …. we have had too much immigration over too short a period and it needs to stop.
        The EU is not a Trade Agreement. It is a Political Union and we don’t need to be in a political union in order to trade with the other European nations. We also don’t need an uncontrolled and uncontrollable immigration agreement in order to trade. We don;t have an open border to China and we trade with them quite happily.

        • Newsbot9

          Right right, lashing out against the Other as usual. Plain bigotry, and you need to crash the economy.

          Keep ignoring the fact that free trade and freedom of movement are not separable for the EU, rightly, so you’re indeed calling for tarrifs and the loss of tens of billions, and ignoring the large number of free trade treaties the EU has, and the UK uses heavily!

          Keep talking up the Chinese model for British workers wages too. Not a coincidence! Gotta collapse the economy to get there.

          PS, do ask your Rabbi about your views…because supporting the far right’s views, as you are, in the current political climate…

    • Grrr8

      Just noted your use of the word “appeasement”. So you equate the EU with the Nazis? What an ugly little person you are.

  • Grrr8

    A little lost on what practical measures the local authorities and national govt need to take here. Maybe hire some interpreters, translate forms into Romanian and Bulgarian? How can they plan for school places etc unless they know where these people will go.

    • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1296945479 John McClane

      Well, they could go on past experience. Wood Green used to be Irish then it became black. Now it’s overwhelmingly Polish & Serbian. You just need to look at notices on newsagents’ boards around the tube to know that. (Though how the Serbs got there, I don’t know, Serbia’s not even in the EU.)

      So I would hazard a guess that Haringey will get a fair proportion of Bulgarians and can plan accordingly.

    • Colonel Mustard

      Ha ha! A “practical” measure for our forthcoming infrastructure crisis. Hire interpreters and translate forms at yet more expense for the direct benefit of foreigners. Hilarious. You and your little iPad must be in the public sector.

  • foxoles

    ‘What the government must do to prepare’ for them?

    No longer even any pretence that we are in charge of our own affairs, then? That we could decide for ourselves whether they come or not, or how many we admit?

    Just, ‘It’s happening, prepare for it’?

    • Grrr8

      Did you somehow miss the memo that we are in the EU and have signed up to the convention on the free movement of people?

      • foxoles

        Did you miss the fact that the EU is completely undemocratic?

        • Grrr8

          Outside of the fact that the EU being undemocratic is tosh (we are represented their by an elected govt and elected MEPs), its irrelevant to this topic. The free movement of people convention is not going to change between now and 2014. And we aren’t going to leave the EU in that time period either.

          • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1296945479 John McClane

            there, not *their*. It’s not rocket science.

            • Newsbot9

              Ah yes, Grammar Nazis. Similar to the rest of your views then.

          • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100004981542519 Tom Tom

            The EU was designed to be non-democratic. That is what Salter and Monnet intended and Spinelli was a Communist

            • Newsbot9

              Yes, keep trying to pretend they were like you.

          • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100004981542519 Tom Tom

            The Supreme Soviet was elected too

          • http://www.facebook.com/people/Chris-Green/1639128070 Chris Green

            Who elected Van Rumpoy?

            • Newsbot9

              He’s appointed by the *elected* heads of state.

        • Newsbot9

          Outside your fantasies. you mean? Yea, you keep attacking an EU considerably more democratic than the UK, which has a House of Lords and an appointed cabinet.

      • http://www.facebook.com/people/Chris-Green/1639128070 Chris Green

        Did you somehow miss the memo that the EU started off as a trading pact in the early 1970s but has somehow become in the meantime an unelected, undemocratic superstate ? And its all one way traffic!

        • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100004981542519 Tom Tom

          It was NEVER a Trading Pact. NEVER. It was not conceived as such and Heath knew that.

          • David Lindsay

            And he said so.

  • David Lindsay

    They are not coming. Why would anyone move from their own improving corner of the Second World to someone else’s rapidly declining corner of the Second World? Thank George Osborne for something, I suppose.

    Miliband can score an easy goal by calling for the restrictions to remain in place. But, and because, they are not coming. Why would anyone move from their own improving corner of the Second World to someone else’s rapidly declining corner of the Second World?

    • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1296945479 John McClane

      The Roma will come. Because they know they can claim benefits, get housing & beg on the tube.

      • David Lindsay

        They can do all that where they are. Probably better.

        • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1296945479 John McClane

          No, they can’t. Have you been on the tube lately?

        • Boudicca_Icenii

          Benefits in Romania are tiny in comparison to the UK. The UK’s welfare state will pay a Roma family about 9 times what they would get in Romania.

          • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1296945479 John McClane

            Plus, of course, if you’re Romanian, you’ll carry on getting them when you go back. Whereas Brits can’t even start to claim benefits there.

        • http://www.facebook.com/people/Chris-Green/1639128070 Chris Green

          But they cant send their children out pick-pocketing in Romania or Bulgaria! The locals wouldn`t put up with it! There are rich pickings on Londons Tube trains and buses!

          • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1296945479 John McClane

            They send their children out to supermarket carparks in BG to take back your trolleys to get the 20 or 50 stotinka coins (7p or 20p, used to be less but the £’s devalued) you put in them to get them out.

            • ButcombeMan

              I saw that supermarket trolley thing near Hertford recently.

          • Newsbot9

            Yes, keep trying to pass off your thieves, Fagin, as foreigners.

      • ButcombeMan

        Or get their children to beg.

      • Newsbot9

        Yes, keep up your racist, xenophobic lies.

      • Austin Barry

        As far as I can tell the Roma are already here and engaged in begging. How come?

    • the viceroy’s gin

      To find fluffy-brained leftists like you who will hand them cash because they’re performing the invaluable service of breathing?

      • David Lindsay

        You are the one in favour of an economic system which cannot exist without unrestricted migration. You have somehow managed to convince yourself that it is conservative, even Tory.

        In reality, the (very recent) takeover of historically conservative parties by that sort of thing represented the destruction of conservatism in the English-speaking West, no matter how many elections someone like Reagan, Thatcher or Mulrooney may have won. Not by accident did they deliver massive increases in welfare dependency.

        • the viceroy’s gin

          …is that what the voices are telling you?

          Is that anything like how infanticide and homosexual marriage are “social conservative”?

          • David Lindsay

            Time for your lie down.

            • the viceroy’s gin

              Ok, but first, tell me a bedtime story about infanticide and homosexual marriage being “social conservative”. 😉

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1296945479 John McClane

    A million Bulgarians already live & work abroad. Why would even 1/10th of those that are left come to the UK? The NHS e.g. Mid_Staffs is broken. The education service is broken. The Police Service, taking bribes from the media & framing politicians, is broken. The print media, paying bribes and hacking ‘phones, is broken. The BBC is broken, the economy is broken, the £ is broken. The banks are broken, the BoE is broken. The government is broken. The country is broken. The UK is a banana republic. There may be Bulgarians who want to come here but there’ll be a damn sight more who’ll recognise they have better prospects in other countries where their compatriots already live.

    • Boudicca_Icenii

      Because they can get up to £500 a week in benefits, when everything is taken into account.

      • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1296945479 John McClane

        The Roma will go for that. But the Bulgarians we need to have in the UK have either gone or will go elsewhere.

        • Newsbot9

          Ah yes, typical racism against travelling peoples. A warning sign about the rise of the violent far right.

  • LordLieutenant

    The reason why immigration is such a hot-button issue is less to do with potential future inflows, but with what we’ve got right here and now.

    Far too many individuals and families have been granted full citizenship, indefinite leave to remain or residential rights, overwhelmingly to the detriment of the British people.

    From the low skilled, but hard working Eastern European wage slave to the African safe country hopping ‘refugee’ and her Victorian sized family – The British people bear collective witness on a daily basis to one of the most shameful betrayals in our history with the poorest Britons suffering disproportionately to the closeted elite.

    There is absolutely no point in discussing future immigration when we have such a monumental problem at home.

    Immigrant individuals or families who have arrived in the last 10-15 years must be assessed as to their financial contribution to the UK and their willingness to adapt our cultural norms and obey our laws or be obliged to leave.

    I’m happy to pay a percentage or the money they would otherwise consume in order to see them on their way and I certainly don’t begrudge them for wanting to improve their lot in life, but when every other nation on this planet insists on similar criteria for residence and citizenship, isn’t it time we grasped the enormous nettle and gave it a firm pull?

    • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1296945479 John McClane

      Because nobody in the UK has the strength or will to grasp the enormous nettle and give it a firm pull. Nobody.

      • Grrr8

        I recommend you put yourself up for parliament. I’m sure UkIP is not suffering from a surfeit of candidate applications.

        • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100004981542519 Tom Tom

          Parliament is irrelevant it is a Non-Working Men’s Club on the Thames noted for cheap beer and subsidised eats

    • Grrr8

      “Immigrant families …. Be obliged to leave.” You are living in la la land. Migrants with ILR, British passports or Europeam passports cannot be asked to leave. This has been the position of both the courts and the government even in the most racist days of Enoch Powell.

      • LordLieutenant

        In that case I suggest that we write laws that go beyond the ‘racist days of Enoch Powell’ and adopt policy similar to everywhere else in the world.

        • Grrr8

          Except funnily enough, the rest of the world has laws on citizenship/ residency etc much like Britain has. There is no country in the world which will strip you of your citizenship/ residency once you have it except in the most serious cases such as major crimes. Even that power is highly restricted, as it should be.

          • LordLieutenant

            I think that we’re way beyond ‘major crime’ territory here and that any nation faced with similar would do the same.

            • Grrr8

              Right. Except we have fewer migrants than a lot of other countries (as % of population). Yet none of these other countries think we are, as you inarticulately put it, “beyond major crime territory” such that they should discriminate between their own citizens based on place of birth.

              One thing we do have in spades, in fact are world leaders in, is whinging and blaming Johnny Foreigner for our own failings.

              • LordLieutenant

                I’m not interested what percentage other nations take and I’m certainly not blaming foreigners for our failings.

                I’m merely stating that those foreigners who are of benefit to the UK should stay and those who do not should not. Same as every other country in the world.

                • Grrr8

                  Guess what, at some point migrants have to stop proving they are a benefit to the country. That point is called an award of permanent residency and/ or citizenship. We don’t hand out those awards lightly or generously. This is perfectly consistent with most other countries in the world that allow immigration. Learn to live with it as it isn’t going to change.

                • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1296945479 John McClane

                  At what point do they currently start proving they are a benefit to the country?

                • Hexhamgeezer

                  ‘We don’t hand out those awards lightly or generously’

                  Total bullshot

                • http://www.facebook.com/people/Chris-Green/1639128070 Chris Green

                  No they hand them out like sweets more like!

                • http://www.facebook.com/people/Chris-Green/1639128070 Chris Green

                  Except that the reasons for doing so are very dubious i.e masses of cheap rate workers to keep wages low and or to get more votes for the Labour party?

                • Newsbot9

                  No, you’re just out for a witch hunt against them. And right, “foreigners” as defined by being just like you. We already have a tight immigration system which is turning away skilled workers, you’re after a purge.

              • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1296945479 John McClane

                % of population where? In Bradford? Luton? or nationally?

                • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100004981542519 Tom Tom

                  Sorry but in Bradford the percentage increases dramatically as you descend the age scale

              • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100004981542519 Tom Tom

                What percentage do you see as being alarming ?

              • http://www.facebook.com/people/Chris-Green/1639128070 Chris Green

                We have fewer immigrants that a lot of other countries! What a lot of rubbish ! Which other countries? Iceland ? Greenland? The UK has probably the highest rate of immigration in the EU!(as per % of population)

                • Grrr8

                  Do a little googling. Your statement is just not true. I believe Germany and even Spain have more.

                • Daniel Maris

                  Grrr8,

                  Can you tell us if you believe there is any upper limit to mass immigration beyond which you would personally not be prepared to move e.g. in a decade, would you say 5 million was an upper limit, or 10 million was, or maybe 25 million. Or are you saying there should be no upper limit?

                • Grrr8

                  This is a remarkably silly question. In a country like the UK with a rapidly ageing native population, our constraint is not absorbing working age migrants, it’s finding them. Today, we are not as attractive a destination as we were in 2004 and we will be even less attractive 10 years from now. I doubt many Bulgarians/ Romanians will move here. Relative to say Germany, our economy isn’t doing great and our benefits system is not generous. Those seeking to collect pensions (a lot of readers on this site) should beware the UK’s future capacity to pay them.
                  Sent from my iPad

                • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100004981542519 Tom Tom

                  You know little about Hartz IV then

                • Grrr8

                  Fair enough. Pls enlighten all of us.

                • Boudicca_Icenii

                  Here’s Migration Watch’s Report on the impact of UK Welfare on any prospective Romanians and Bulgarians.

                  http://news.migrationwatch.org.uk/welfare_benefits/

                  And here’s their briefing on EU nationals access to the UK Welfare State.
                  We are the softest touch in the EU; we have the easiest to access benefits and also one of the most generous welfare systems.
                  They will flock here to the land of “free everything.”

                • Grrr8

                  Yeah, MigrationWatch makes money by “yelling fire in a crowded theatre” when it comes to migration. An independent source, whose mission is not to reduce migration but to report on it, would be more credible.

                • http://www.facebook.com/people/Simon-Fay/1127268875 Simon Fay

                  “Sent from my iPad”

                  Says it all.

                • Newsbot9

                  Given the problem we face is a collapsing economy due to Tory mismanagement and emigration is high, your question is unrealistic.

                • http://www.facebook.com/people/Chris-Green/1639128070 Chris Green

                  Yes only slightly more I`ll wager! Whats your link? Anyhow they are bigger countries! UK has the highest density!

                • Grrr8

                  Google the density stats too. Compare to HK, SG, NL.

                  Sent from my iPad

                • http://www.facebook.com/people/Chris-Green/1639128070 Chris Green

                  Whats HK got to do with the EU and immigration into the UK!!!!???? I take it you mean Hong Kong?

                • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100004981542519 Tom Tom

                  I think you err……Germany collates statistics very differently because it was hard to acquire Citizenship whereas in the UK it is easy

                • Grrr8

                  I wouldn’t call it easy in the UK but your broader point that acquisition of citizenship will skew the stats on non-citizen migrants. If you count by place of birth though, you adjust for that factor.

                • Newsbot9

                  America, Canada, Australia…to talk about the English-speaking countries.

                  And it’s not high for the EU no.

              • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100004981542519 Tom Tom

                whingeing is the English spelling…..

          • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1296945479 John McClane

            Citizenship is not residency. They are two different things. You can lose residency in many countries simply by not renewing it. You will be led to the border and told to go.

            • Grrr8

              It’s called “permanent” residency or “indefinite leave” for a reason. I’ll ignore your silly grammatical point (damn autocorrect).

              • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100004981542519 Tom Tom

                Who says the State granting these favours has legitimacy ?

                • Grrr8

                  Have you turned into an anarchist?

                • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100004981542519 Tom Tom

                  “Turned into ” ? What do you mean ? I simply do not recognise The State as being legitimate…LIfe has more to offer than being a State-Worshipper. You should get out more

                • Grrr8

                  If that’s the case, then you can’t believe the state has any right to control the border, never mind issue passports. Ergo, free and unlimited immigration, a position even I don’t advocate. Idiot.

                • Colonel Mustard

                  Don’t be so hard on yourself. I wouldn’t say that you were an idiot, just your average taxpayer subsidised think-tank type “progressive” wonk with an iPad but without a clue.

                • Grrr8

                  Funnily enough, I’m more of a city type. And sadly the iPad is self funded. Do you have one? Jealous much?

                • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1296945479 John McClane

                  I heard Android was the way to go. Leaves iPad standing.

                • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100004981542519 Tom Tom

                  City-type ? You must acquire some morals and intelligence, you cannot live as a fraudster without fear of retribution

                • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100004981542519 Tom Tom

                  The State does NOT control the border

                • Newsbot9

                  Lol! Too true. Borders are a statist artifact.

                • Newsbot9

                  Thanks for admitting your revolutionary aims.

            • Newsbot9

              That’s right, which is why he’s after the “unacceptable” citizens first.

          • Davey12

            No true.

            In fact many countries in the middle east treat religious minorities in a disgusting and totally inhumane. Yet they expect we treat them with kindness and tolerance while saying hateful things about us.

            Of course like a standard lefty the only hate speech you care about is white hate speech. Brown hate speech is ok and acceptable.

            Smell the hypocrisy.

            • Grrr8

              If you think Britain should aspire to the same standards as Saudi Arabia, I’d say good luck but I’ll be first in line to oppose you.
              I should have qualified my comment to say the rest of the developed world.

          • Carolus Campanus

            That’s not true. I lived in Mexico for twenty years and hold the status of inmigrado in their system. Now, I could not be deported at the whim of a lowly official, but if the president signed my deportation order then there would be no right of appeal and the police would just throw me on a flight going out. OK, that does not happen very often, but it can under the law.

            Not only that, but if I went for a job and a Mexican with similar qualifications did the same then by law he has to have that job. As a foreigner I cannot protest at that action as foreigners are not allowed to get involved in politics – the Mexicans get touchy about foreigners mouthing off and will deport any who do.

            • Grrr8

              Lol, your description of your status in MX actually agrees with my point: you would need the Head of State to make the decision to deport you and you are not even the holder of an MX passport.
              Sent from my iPad

              • Carolus Campanus

                No, you wrote that “the rest of the world has laws on residency much like Britain has.” Those are YOUR words, and they are just not true. Unless you want to claim that David Cameron can sign a piece of paper and get someone deported.

                • Grrr8

                  The Home Secretary has that authority.

                  Sent from my iPad

                • Carolus Campanus

                  No he doesn’t as it can be challenged in court.

        • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100004981542519 Tom Tom

          Enoch Powell was no racist – he was certainly more fluent in Urdu than Cameron or Heath

          • LordLieutenant

            Enoch on British colonial crimes during the Kenya Mau-Mau rebellion.

            “I would say it is a fearful doctrine, which must recoil upon the heads
            of those who pronounce it, to stand in judgement on a fellow human being
            and say, ‘Because he was such-and-such, therefore the consequences which
            would otherwise flow from his death shall not flow”

            Those who call Powell a ‘racist’ are often those keenest to cast judgement on the basis of race.

        • Newsbot9

          We do. You want a moral panic, a witch hunt to burn out tens of millions.

      • LB

        European passport? Yes
        Eire passports? Yes
        UK Passports? No, unless they lied on their application when they were nationalised.

        • Grrr8

          Agree on #3. On #1 and #2 unless we are prepared to throw out whatever 1920s act allowed RoI citizens residency and leave the EU, they can’t be asked to leave.
          Sent from my iPad

          • LB

            Well any foreign national can be asked to leave.

            Mind you, I did hear a reason why we won’t get lots of Bugarians coming. Apparently we’ve eaten their transport 🙂

    • Newsbot9

      That’s right, British citizens who don’t meet your “acceptability” criteria…it won’t stop with just a few citizens, it turns into a moral witch hunt, of course. Unless they are willing to swear, oh, a loyalty oath and be monitored on compliance- the UKIP’s call – you want citizens to leave.

      You’re the one trying to cut off Britain from it’s trade, crashing it’s economy.

      Of course you want to pull out British values like a nettle and crush them, replacing them with a culturally imperialist, totalitarian monitoring state.

  • Davey12

    Let them all in. The sooner the money runs out the better. We also need to unite the Labour voters and Ex Tory new UKIP voters. The bigger the mess the better.

    • David Lindsay

      Cameron has given up any hope of importing slave labour from Eastern Europe for his and his party’s only base. He now wants it from India, where the burgeoning billionaire class is going to stay exactly where it is already doing so well, meaning that our door is instead wide open to the poorest people in the world. No one else could conceivably want to come to Britain anymore.

      • Davy12

        David, our entire political class are traitors, Tory, Labour and the libDems.

        • Newsbot9

          Nope, but your comment makes YOU a traitor. You don’t even know the law.

    • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1296945479 John McClane

      What do Labour & ex-Tory UKIP voters have in common?

      • Newsbot9

        They’re old.

    • LB

      5,300 bn of pensions debt hidden off the books. It’s a racing certainty.

      The problem is with what replaces it. There are enough nutters who believe in a socialist nirvana, if only they can tax someone else to pay for it.

      • Newsbot9

        Yes, nutters like you who believe in socialism for your rich.

    • Newsbot9

      Of course you’re going to try and crash the economy and use violence to drive people right. Of course you’ll use voter intimation and the usual third-world tactics.

  • Daniel Maris

    Don’t know what the moderation nonsense is about.

    • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1296945479 John McClane

      I’ve been moderated!

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