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Should immigration always be perceived as ‘a problem’?

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Should immigration always be perceived as ‘a problem’?

Post by Ivan on Fri Nov 04, 2011 3:49 pm

First topic message reminder :

Writing for ‘Compass’ in July this year, Lisa Nandy MP said: “For most of my lifetime, politics has been based on a belief that the only way to win elections is to seek out the centre ground, but it is surely an essential plank of a democracy that politicians should provide leadership and not just follow; as Robin Archer of the LSE says, to seek to define and not just seek the centre ground”. She continued by saying that people on the left in politics have to tackle the issues which make us feel uncomfortable – welfare reform, law and order and immigration.
http://www.compassonline.org.uk/news/item.asp?n=13151&offset=50

Let’s tackle the issue of immigration. The right-wing press has been indoctrinating us for years with claims that most immigrants are living on benefits, while at the same time saying that they’ve taken many of our jobs, and of course both scenarios can’t possibly be true. We’re told that the country is already overcrowded; it’s not, only S.E. England is, although we are now the most densely populated country in Europe. We’re told that immigration increases crime (our prisons do indeed hold a disproportionate number of people who weren’t born here) and increases the threat to our security. By increasing the labour force, does immigration suppress wage levels?

In the 1970s, the National Front used to peddle the spurious argument that as there were a million people unemployed in the UK at the time, all we had to do was repatriate a million immigrants and there would be no unemployment. Anyone with half a brain can work out that by reducing the population by a million, you would have a million fewer consumers to buy goods and services, thereby reducing demand and creating unemployment. There would also be a million fewer taxpayers (even those not working pay VAT).

So why have successive UK governments over the last fifty years allowed and even encouraged immigration?
Not out of charity but out of necessity. Firstly, to do jobs which the indigenous population didn’t want to do, or didn’t have the skills to do. The NHS would have collapsed years ago without immigrant doctors and nurses. Secondly, Europe has a declining birth rate, which is threatening to make it difficult to pay for pensions for future generations. Most immigrants are of working age, which means they consume less of the services provided by the state, such as health care and education, and pay more in taxes. Home Office research in 2002 suggested that immigrants paid £2.5bn more in taxes than they took in benefits.

Perhaps if more of us showed a positive attitude to immigrants, welcoming and celebrating diversity instead of perceiving it as ‘a problem’, immigrants might feel less of a need to retreat into ghettos, where some of them succumb to religious fanaticism and terrorism.


Last edited by Ivan on Mon Nov 07, 2011 12:48 am; edited 1 time in total
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Re: Should immigration always be perceived as ‘a problem’?

Post by Ivan on Sat Oct 18, 2014 11:17 pm

I have heard people say (probably correctly) that the vast number of foreign footballers in the Premier League has denied indigenous players the chance to get experience at the top level, and that's the reason why the England team is so poor these days. If anything, the salaries of all footballers are stupendous – they are up there with the corporate and banking fat cats - and it's especially sickening when you hear that Ched Evans was paid £20,000 a week by Sheffield United during the two and half years that he was in jail for rape. But that’s another story…..  Rolling Eyes

The Tories hated the minimum wage when it was introduced in 1998, saying that it would cause a recession that winter, which it didn’t. Multimillionaires like Michael Heseltine saw no problem in people being paid just £1 an hour to push refreshment trolleys through trains - if that was what ‘the market’ deemed they were worth. This vile government has sought to chip away at the principle of the minimum wage, first with ‘workfare’ and now it seems with the idea of paying disabled people (just some to begin with) much less than the going rate, which is currently £6.50 an hour (or £5.13 if you’re aged 18-20).

Nobody can legally be paid £2 an hour, so nobody can force anyone’s wages down to that level. What Labour plans to do is to stop agencies from advertising for foreign workers only, and also to increase the minimum wage from 54% to 58% of median earnings by 2020. That doesn’t sound much, but I guess the idea is to increase low pay in a way which won’t lead to massive job losses.

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Re: Should immigration always be perceived as ‘a problem’?

Post by stuart torr on Sun Oct 19, 2014 12:41 pm

I had never thought of it that way Ivan, so now I have to think of it from a different angle, thanks very much.
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Re: Should immigration always be perceived as ‘a problem’?

Post by boatlady on Sun Oct 19, 2014 9:16 pm

Ivan-good post - the reason perhaps Lord Freud's comments have gained so much attention is that many of us are aware that the core objective of the Tory project at present seems to be to reduce the bulk of the population to a subsistence or below reimbursement, thus creating a large pool of more than willing labour who will do ANYTHING to get food on the table of their starving families - that way you get subservience and cheap labour so the millionaires can get the unquestioning service they feel they deserve.

The impertinence of these rather stupid plutocrats begins to enrage me - I really don't see how we will avoid bloody revolution, except by having a proper socialist government that will try to put things right
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Re: Should immigration always be perceived as ‘a problem’?

Post by stuart torr on Sun Oct 19, 2014 9:37 pm

That is what they are trying with myself at the moment boatlady, no matter how ill I may be, I have to be tested by the government doctors, who then decide whether I am fit to work or not.
It does not matter how much medication I take which goes into thousands, or after each fit I forget what has happened in the past ten days to a fortnight until it gradually comes back, they just do not care at all.
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Re: Should immigration always be perceived as ‘a problem’?

Post by oftenwrong on Sun Oct 19, 2014 10:34 pm

The European attitude to immigration is that going from one Country to another should be no more dramatic than a journey from Manchester to Leeds seeking employment. It works both ways, so what's the problem?
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Re: Should immigration always be perceived as ‘a problem’?

Post by boatlady on Sun Oct 19, 2014 10:35 pm

Far as I can see - no problem
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Re: Should immigration always be perceived as ‘a problem’?

Post by Ivan on Tue Nov 11, 2014 12:01 am

Five Questions for Anyone Who Says “It's Not Racist to Talk About Immigration”

From an article by Mehdi Hasan:-

Those who piously claim that opposition to immigration in the UK isn't driven by prejudice, bigotry and hysteria should try answering the following questions:-

1. Why is it, as Ipsos MORI has pointed out, "that the areas with the lowest immigrant numbers are often those that express the greatest concern about immigration"? Why does support for UKIP tend to be strongest in areas with relatively low migrant populations, such as Clacton?

2. Why, when "net migration is down a quarter from its peak under Labour and... from outside the EU is down to its lowest level since 1998" - as Cameron boasted at PMQs on 29 October - has concern about immigration continued to skyrocket, to a point where it now tops the list of voters' priorities?

3. Why do people think that far more immigrants live in the UK than actually do? (Britons believe immigrants make up 24% of the population; the real figure is 13%.)

4. Why was 70% of the public telling Gallup in 1978 that Britain was "being swamped" by people with different cultures, even though net migration at the time was negative (more people were leaving the UK than were arriving) and had been so for more than a decade?

5. Why do 26% of Britons – and 51% of UKIP supporters - think the government "should encourage immigrants and their families to leave Britain", according to a YouGov poll in April? Isn't the (voluntary) repatriation of immigrants, including the British-born children of immigrants, a hallmark of good ol' fashioned far-right, racist politics?


http://www.huffingtonpost.co.uk/mehdi-hasan/immigration-racism_b_6132138.html
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Re: Should immigration always be perceived as ‘a problem’?

Post by oftenwrong on Tue Nov 11, 2014 9:33 am

"Immigration" can of course be a blessing or a curse, like fire or water, depending upon the circumstances. The current furore is a typical conjurer's trick designed to draw the attention of voters away from other more fundamental problems such as the equitable distribution of wealth and resources.

The quickness of the hand deceives the eye, but more attention to what the politicians DO, rather than what they say, might actually produce a better result for us all next May.

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Re: Should immigration always be perceived as ‘a problem’?

Post by stuart torr on Tue Nov 11, 2014 3:41 pm

Very true OW, WHY ARE YOU NOT IN PARLIAMENT Laughing
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Re: Should immigration always be perceived as ‘a problem’?

Post by Ivan on Sun Nov 16, 2014 10:42 pm

In my opinion, this is a sensible and well balanced article on a contentious topic....  thumbsup

Voters’ real views on immigration would surprise all party leaders

Extracts from an article by Andrew Rawnsley:-

The public does have a very poor grasp of the scale and nature of immigration. In Ipsos MORI’s most recent survey on this, the average guess at the proportion of the UK population that is foreign-born was 31%. The official estimate is 13%. Yet simply telling voters they are misinformed risks hardening attitudes about immigration among the “anxious middle”. People don’t like to be called stupid. And they really don’t like it when liberals imply that anyone who disagrees with them on immigration is either a racist or the dupes of racists.

All the traditional parties are struggling to find ways of talking to the voters about immigration that manage to stay true to their principles and faithful to Britain’s national interests while also being practical, deliverable, trusted and capable of mobilising broad consent. Dismissing public anxiety as just irrational, which has been the vice of some liberals, doesn’t work. Stoking public anxiety, by ramping up “tough” rhetoric and making promises that can’t be kept, is even worse.

The good news is that public attitudes are not as simplistically hostile as is often assumed. Xenophobes who think most voters share their toxic views and liberals who fear that to be the case are both wrong. The majority of voters have a much more complex set of attitudes that are not being reflected by the party political slugfest. Nigel Farage likes to claim that he speaks for “the silent majority”; he is actually the megaphone of a noisy minority.


For the whole article:-
http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2014/nov/16/voter-views-immigration-surprising-to-party-leaders
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Re: Should immigration always be perceived as ‘a problem’?

Post by stuart torr on Mon Nov 17, 2014 2:51 pm

They cannot exactly say do you like foreign people can they Ivan?
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Re: Should immigration always be perceived as ‘a problem’?

Post by oftenwrong on Mon Nov 24, 2014 10:55 pm

UK Border Authority adopt sophisticated screening technique

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Re: Should immigration always be perceived as ‘a problem’?

Post by stuart torr on Tue Nov 25, 2014 12:19 pm

Is that what it will come to OW? the more bloody UKIP MPs we bloody get.
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Re: Should immigration always be perceived as ‘a problem’?

Post by oftenwrong on Wed Nov 26, 2014 11:21 am

A plausible chap appearing on the BBC Radio 4 "Today" programme suggested that if the British public saw the "benefits entitlement" aspect stripped out of the "immigrant problem" they would become reconciled to open borders.
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Re: Should immigration always be perceived as ‘a problem’?

Post by stuart torr on Wed Nov 26, 2014 12:37 pm

That is very true OW, Because that is the point that irritates most of the people that I speak to with regards to it.
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Re: Should immigration always be perceived as ‘a problem’?

Post by boatlady on Wed Nov 26, 2014 7:46 pm

I favour living in a country where no-one has to go roofless or hungry or lack health care - whatever their nationality, ethnicity, gender or sexuality - anything else seems to me to breed criminality and discontent

Just call me a cock-eyed optimist
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Re: Should immigration always be perceived as ‘a problem’?

Post by stuart torr on Wed Nov 26, 2014 7:57 pm

Well at the moment boatlady i'm afraid to say, you are living in one.
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Re: Should immigration always be perceived as ‘a problem’?

Post by Ivan on Fri Jan 23, 2015 10:13 pm

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Re: Should immigration always be perceived as ‘a problem’?

Post by oftenwrong on Fri Jan 23, 2015 10:38 pm

Nobody ever got rich under-estimating the gullibility of the general public. Rolling Eyes
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Re: Should immigration always be perceived as ‘a problem’?

Post by Ivan on Wed Apr 22, 2015 9:52 pm

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Re: Should immigration always be perceived as ‘a problem’?

Post by stuart torr on Wed Apr 22, 2015 10:10 pm

Just please do not crash your boat into the big one then, or all the immigrants will drown, which happens too often these days does it not. No No
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Re: Should immigration always be perceived as ‘a problem’?

Post by boatlady on Thu Apr 23, 2015 9:00 am

Great cartoon, Ivan - if only governments and bigots and closed border freaks saw it in the same simple terms - as I keep saying (and winding up the atheists) we're all god's children
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Re: Should immigration always be perceived as ‘a problem’?

Post by Ivan on Thu Apr 23, 2015 11:06 pm

Some of Frankie Boyle’s thoughts about immigration:-

Give a man a fish and he can eat for a day. Give him a fishing rod and he can feed himself. Alternatively, don’t poison the fishing waters, abduct his great-grandparents into slavery, then turn up 400 years later on your gap year talking a lot of shite about fish.

Comic Relief this year focused on Malawi and Uganda. I didn’t see any acknowledgement that Britain had been the colonial power in those countries. “Thanks for the gold, lads, thanks for the diamonds. We had a whip-round and got you a fishing rod.”

Britain has streets named after slave owners. We profited from a vile crime and feel no shame. We fear the arrival of immigrants that we have drawn here with the wealth we stole from them. For much of the rest of the world we must be the focus of bitter amusement, characters in a satire we don’t understand. It is British people who don’t learn languages, or British history. Britain is the true scrounger, the true criminal.


http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2015/apr/20/britain-criminally-stupid-race-immigration
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Re: Should immigration always be perceived as ‘a problem’?

Post by oftenwrong on Thu Apr 23, 2015 11:44 pm

Ivan wrote:Some of Frankie Boyle’s thoughts about immigration:-

.... It is British people who don’t learn languages, or British history. Britain is the true scrounger, the true criminal.

Which is what allows some British people to feel perfectly OK now about wanting immigrants to stay away from here.

Interesting to hear Cameron promising at Brussels that he would send the Royal Navy to scoop up shipwrecked people from the Mediterranean on the understanding that they would not be allowed into this sceptred isle.  It could be even more interesting to watch the reaction of the Italian authorities when HMS Bulwark turns up in Sicily with several hundred distressed mariners to unload.

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Re: Should immigration always be perceived as ‘a problem’?

Post by oftenwrong on Fri Apr 24, 2015 7:56 pm

In the wake of a recent article in the Sun newspaper calling migrants ‘cockroaches,’ the United Nations human rights chief today urged British authorities and media to take steps to curb incitement to hatred by tabloid newspapers.

http://article.wn.com/view/2015/04/24/UN_rights_chief_urges_UK_to_curb_tabloid_hate_speech_end_dec/

The ever-delightful Kate Hopkins said in the "Sun" column that she did not care if migrants died on their crossing of the Mediterranean, that they were like "cockroaches", "feral humans", and that gunboats should be dispatched to prevent further arrivals.

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Re: Should immigration always be perceived as ‘a problem’?

Post by Ivan on Fri Apr 24, 2015 8:20 pm

Water finds its own level. So does scum. Evil or Very Mad


https://pbs.twimg.com/media/CDYT7bdW0AAD-W_.jpg
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Re: Should immigration always be perceived as ‘a problem’?

Post by stuart torr on Fri Apr 24, 2015 8:28 pm

Notice how much weight camerton has put on since being PM?
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Re: Should immigration always be perceived as ‘a problem’?

Post by Phil Hornby on Fri Apr 24, 2015 8:29 pm

Did ever a couple deserve each other's company more...?
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Re: Should immigration always be perceived as ‘a problem’?

Post by oftenwrong on Sat Aug 15, 2015 5:54 pm

A throwaway-line from "Dead Ringers" on Radio 4:

"You can't put any blame for swarms of refugees on Cameron and Osborne - they've done their best to make this Country an unattractive place."
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Re: Should immigration always be perceived as ‘a problem’?

Post by Phil Hornby on Sat Aug 15, 2015 6:06 pm



" Immigration isn't a problem - provided the buggers don't come here..."
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Re: Should immigration always be perceived as ‘a problem’?

Post by Ivan on Tue Aug 25, 2015 11:41 pm

Europe shouldn’t worry about migrants. It should worry about creeping fascism

Extracts from an article by Laurie Penny:-

There is an urban legend that if you put a frog in a pan of cold water and slowly turn up the heat, the frog will sit there calmly until it boils to death. Creeping cultural change is like that. It’s hard to spot when you’re living inside it. You can stay very still while the mood of a society becomes harder and meaner and uglier by stages, telling yourself that everything is going to be fine as all around you, the water begins to bubble.

All of us were badly fooled in May. We made the mistake of thinking that UKIP, with 12.6% of the vote share and just one MP, did not win the general election. But the rhetoric of the racist, xenophobic fringe has been adopted by the political mainstream in a way that is no less upsetting for being entirely predictable.

The ultimate victory of fringe groups is not to enter the administration, but to change its direction, and UKIP has done this with aplomb. Cameron describes migrants to Europe as a “swarm”, and the foreign secretary goes further, warning the people of Britain that the thousands of desperate people drowning in the Mediterranean are “marauding” foreigners who must be prevented from coming here because they will threaten our “standard of living” and our “way of life”.

Fascism happens when a culture fracturing along social lines is encouraged to unite against a perceived external threat. Living standards have gone down, but that has little to do with immigration, yet migrants are presented as a paradox, just as the Jews were in the 1930s. Nobody can quite decide whether migrants are a problem because they work so hard that they’re taking all the jobs, or because they’re too lazy to work so they’re taking all the benefit money. It cannot be both at once.


For the whole article:-
http://www.newstatesman.com/politics/2015/08/europe-shouldn-t-worry-about-migrants-it-should-worry-about-creeping-fascism
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Re: Should immigration always be perceived as ‘a problem’?

Post by oftenwrong on Thu Aug 27, 2015 10:29 am

Everybody is their own psychologist on the question of immigration, but it usually comes down to our perception of "the pecking order".

Immigrants who acknowledge by their behaviour a lackey status will normally gain a grudging acceptance from an indigent population. But it's when the newcomers decline the kind offer of second-class-citizenship that their presence becomes resented by the existing majority.




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Re: Should immigration always be perceived as ‘a problem’?

Post by Phil Hornby on Wed Sep 02, 2015 9:29 pm

(msn)

" Angela, I don't need you to give me instructions about how to run my country - I have Mr.Murdoch to do that..."
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Re: Should immigration always be perceived as ‘a problem’?

Post by oftenwrong on Wed Sep 02, 2015 10:33 pm

Within the "problem" of immigration may lie a stimulus for British business, in the form of high quality staff.  Television reporters logically seek out refugees who can speak English, and it is noticeable that compared with the past the "class of 2015" contains an unusual proportion of intelligent and educated people who are used to affluence.  They present as clean, well dressed, with firm travel plans - and they carry smart-phones.

These people are not the stereotype huddled masses but articulate middle-class middle-management types displaced by events outside their control.  Not unlike the Scientists, Professionals and Artistic talents who were forced to leave Germany in the 1930s.

Cameron isn't noted for his good ideas, but admitting talented and successful people to our shores is a no-brainer.
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Re: Should immigration always be perceived as ‘a problem’?

Post by Ivan on Fri Sep 04, 2015 11:15 pm

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Re: Should immigration always be perceived as ‘a problem’?

Post by boatlady on Sat Sep 05, 2015 9:21 am

Yes - that's about it
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Re: Should immigration always be perceived as ‘a problem’?

Post by Ivan on Thu Oct 08, 2015 9:36 pm

Theresa May's immigration speech is dangerous and factually wrong

From an article by James Kirkup:-

It's hard to know where to start with Theresa May's awful, ugly, misleading, cynical and irresponsible speech to the Conservative Party conference. If you haven't seen reports of it, allow me to summarise: "Immigrants are stealing your job, making you poorer and ruining your country. Never mind the facts, just feel angry at foreigners. And make me Conservative leader."

Many British people are indeed worried about immigration and the effects it has on their communities and lives. Doubtless many people base their thinking on personal experience. But perhaps, just perhaps, perception matters too – the perception that immigration is a problem even if you don't directly experience any negative consequences yourself. There's evidence, for instance, that the less personal acquaintance with migrants a person has, the more worried they are about immigration.

If, as Mrs May argues, immigration makes British society less cohesive and leaves groups of people less able to get along, isn't that at least partly the result of politicians pandering to ignorance and prejudice and wilfully distorting the evidence to persuade people to be angry and afraid? If she really wants to help, she could start by abandoning this cheap and nasty speech and the politics behind it.


For the whole article:-
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/immigration/11913927/Theresa-Mays-immigration-speech-is-dangerous-and-factually-wrong.html
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Re: Should immigration always be perceived as ‘a problem’?

Post by boatlady on Thu Oct 08, 2015 11:15 pm

I read it and wept - and then I prayed that most people would see her speech as the cynical and fact-free electioneering it undoubtedly is - I think Mrs May aspires to be another Iron Lady - to me, she seems weak and incompetent - more of an ironing lady - I rather hope many see her in the same light
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Re: Should immigration always be perceived as ‘a problem’?

Post by Ivan on Fri May 27, 2016 3:27 pm

EU immigration has no negative impact on British wages, jobs or public services

Adapted from an article by Siobhan Fenton:-

EU immigration to the UK has not harmed British peoples’ access to jobs, public services or incomes, a major study has concluded. The report, by the London School of Economics, has dispelled a number of ‘myths’ or misconceptions about the impact of immigration on the UK.

The research shows that EU immigrants are less likely to claim benefits than British born citizens are. Areas with high immigration do not have higher rates of unemployed British people than other areas with less immigration. EU immigrants are not a drain on the economy, but create jobs by using local shops and other services, which increases demand for goods and services, in turn creating more employment opportunities. The biggest cause of recent reduction in real wage value has been the global economic crisis and shows no relationship with immigration.

The report also shows that EU immigrants contribute more in tax than they use in public services, that on average EU immigrants have higher education attainment levels than British born citizens do, and that there is no evidence that crime levels increase in line with the number of immigrants living in an area. Refugees living in other EU countries, such as Germany, have no right to enter the UK, but any countries accessing the Single Market must allow free movement of EU citizens whether in the EU or not.

http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/home-news/eu-immigration-has-no-negative-impact-on-british-wages-jobs-or-public-services-research-finds-a7026796.html


Migrants, who are mostly young, use the NHS less than the ageing native population. They also pay into welfare and staff the health service.

From an article by Luke Lythgoe:-

Vote Leave says “uncontrolled EU immigration is putting a huge strain on our public services”. Newspapers such as ‘The Daily Mail’ and ‘Daily Express’ are also quick to make the link between NHS woes and a “massive influx of EU migrants”.

But EU migration contributes to the NHS in two main ways. Firstly, EU nationals living and working in the UK pay more into the British welfare system than they take out. According to UCL research, between 2001 and 2011 nationals from the European Economic Area (EU member states plus Norway, Iceland and Liechtenstein) made a net contribution of £22.1 billion. Native Britons were a net drain to the tune of £624.1 billion. Secondly, new NHS figures show 4.5% of its workforce is from EU countries. The figure is higher for professionally qualified clinical staff, with 6% of nurses and health visitors and nearly 9% of doctors coming from the EU.


http://infacts.org/mythbusts/eu-migrants-arent-drain-nhs/
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Re: Should immigration always be perceived as ‘a problem’?

Post by oftenwrong on Sun May 29, 2016 5:22 pm

"Support for migrant workers" figures from a different source today - David Smith in The Sunday Times.  
....Immigration is economically beneficial but politically toxic ....

Detailed technical stats provided, e.g.  HMRC data shows migrants paid £2.5bn taxes in 2013-2014; more than they claimed in benefits.

Also comments that Brexiteers plans for immigration controls represent MORE red-tape hampering British employers, not less as advertised.

email david.smith@sunday-times.co.uk
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Re: Should immigration always be perceived as ‘a problem’?

Post by Ivan on Sun Jun 12, 2016 11:32 pm

Immigration and wages: getting the numbers right

More lies from Brexit leaders Iain Duncan Smith, Boris Johnson and Gisela Stuart are exposed.  Rolling Eyes

Jonathan Portes writes: “The idea that immigration is the main or even a moderately important driver of low pay is simply not supported by the available evidence. Politicians who claim the contrary are either so obsessed with immigration that they are blind to more important issues - or they are merely trying to divert attention from their failure to propose policy measures that would actually make a meaningful difference to the low paid.

Full details here:-
http://www.niesr.ac.uk/blog/immigration-and-wages-getting-numbers-right
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Re: Should immigration always be perceived as ‘a problem’?

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