Home Secretary Amber Rudd has proposed negotiating away border controls during the Brexit talks, giving EU migrants access to Britain’s labour market, benefits system, and health service.
The liberal ‘conservative’ heads the government department responsible for immigration and border controls, but is privately in favour of walking back promises that Britain will regain full control over its borders once the country finally leaves the European Union.
A leaked document which outlines a series of deep concessions on border controls was presented to Prime Minister Theresa May in March and shocked Brexit-supporting colleagues in Cabinet, according to The Times:
The leaked document, drawn up by Rudd’s team and officials in the Cabinet Office, was presented to Theresa May’s Brexit war cabinet last month. It makes clear that the home secretary’s blueprint for a new immigration system, due by the end of the year, could be negotiated away in the trade talks with Brussels.
Colleagues said Rudd was an “enthusiastic” supporter of the plan to put immigration controls on the table in negotiations. She has privately said she wants a highly liberal system with no restrictions on skilled migrants and continued access for many unskilled EU migrants.
“If we decide it’s beneficial to enter negotiations we could seek to frame our proposals in the context of a labour mobility partnership encompassing social security, reciprocal healthcare and other rights,” the document says. “The UK should develop its immigration framework outside of negotiations whilst retaining flexibility on this if it proves advantageous during broader negotiations.”
The leak is just the latest scandal to engulf the embattled Home Secretary, who has also been under pressure after accusations her department targeted so-called ‘Windrush generation’ migrants with a legal right to be in Britain for deportation.
She is also accused of lying about having no knowledge of departmental deportation targets, which have now been scrapped.
Last year, it emerged that she had “lost” some 56,000 illegal migrants, including 700 convicted criminals, who were scheduled for deportation but were not detained, allowing them to disappear into the country.
However, these revelations only received only brief and scanty coverage from the mainstream media, who have chosen to treat the Windrush errors as a far more serious matter.
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