Communities are changing because of the influx of migrants, a senior Cabinet minister has said. Iain Duncan Smith, Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, told Radio 5 live that migrant children who don’t speak English are changing the character of Britain’s schools.
His words come after a report was released which said immigration from the European Union had been a boon to the exchequer.
The report by University College London, which receives funding from the EU, said that EU migrants had contributed £20bn to the British economy although it chose to cherry pick targets which supported EU policies.
Mr Duncan Smith told Radio 5 Live: “I thought there was a silly report, recently, in the last couple of weeks, that said oh look in tax terms they have contributed more – first of all you have to take them all the way through to when they get older and they actually start taking from the state.”
“You don’t account for the fact that often in many communities they literally change the schooling because so many people arrive not speaking English.
“You have then got problems with local services, transport all that kind of stuff.”
He added that said that foreign workers are already causing “problems” with “local services” and “transport”
“Europe as a whole needs to tackle this because when all the GDPs of the various economies were about the same then the freedom of movement really was a fairly balanced process, once the economies are not the same you get big difficulties, so he is simply warning what the Germans already know privately and have said to me – they need to sort this problem out.”
The report revealed the true cost of migration to the UK as £114bn in a ‘best case’ scenario and £159bn at worse, as the bill for migrants accessing public services such as the NHS and schools was higher than the amount paid in taxes by the same group.
And Mr Duncan Smith said that the huge waves of migration including communities who do not speak English are changing the face of Britain’s schools.
His words come as Sir Michael Wilshaw, the chief inspector of schools, is putting together reports on how schools can deal with the “big issue” of growing numbers of children who speak a foreign language, the Telegraph reports.
Sir Michael said: “When they’re faced with an influx of children from other countries, they need the resources and capacity to deal with it and if those resources aren’t there, that’s a big issue for government,”
Last week the Foreign Secretary Philip Hammond hinted that the Government could demand that Brussels pays the costs of building new schools if they are needed because of migrant numbers.
Mr Hammond also said in a candid interview that full control on immigration into the UK was incompatible with EU membership, in a statement which will be grasped by both Tory and Labour eurosceptic MPs and UKIP.
The Prime Minister is due to make a statement on immigration and EU reform following a pledge he made during campaigning for the Rochester and Strood by election which the Conservatives are set to lose to Mr Farage’s party.
He is facing pressure from all sides, including the German Chancellor and the Former Prime Minister Sir John major over what reforms can and, in their opinion, should be done to pacify an angry population.