A senior Tory backbencher has warned the government’s immigration policy risks “immensely serious social dangers” because it does not do enough to curb access to jobs and welfare. Brian Binley, who is treasurer of the powerful 1922 Committee, made the claim in a new study for Civitas with the academic Dr Lee Rotherham.
The two say the countries of origin of immigrants should pay for their citizens’ social security until they have made a significant contribution to taxation. Any immigrants convicted of a crime with more than a one year prison sentence would be automatically deported, along with anyone who is given two fines – a much stricter regime than the government is proposing.
As concerns about immigration have grown, David Cameron has stumbled around looking for ways to enact curbs. Grassroots conservatives had hoped for limits on those coming in from the EU, but the Prime Minister was forced to back down on this policy in the face of serious opposition from Germany. Under EU treaties he cannot bring in any curbs without the agreement of the other countries in the bloc.
Instead, Cameron is proposing limits on in-work benefits, including access to social housing, which has put serious additional pressure on the property market. But Binley said EU rules has meant the UK has “surrendered control over its borders”.
The pamphlet continued: “Emerging policies have failed to be wide-ranging and ambitious enough. Failure to address public immigration concerns would carry immensely serious social dangers… The free movement of workers as permitted under EU rules means that the UK has lost control of the supply side of its workforce.
“This would not be an issue but for the fact that it is subsidising its own native workforce to remain unemployed and our long-term uncompetitiveness by hiring in outside labour.
“This may be advantageous to the productivity of the companies in these areas, but it is disadvantageous to the taxpayer who has to effectively subsidise them by dole payments, while the UK workers affected fail to better themselves and rise up the employment ladder.”