Following the UK Coalition Government’s epic failure to curb immigration with the ‘Go Home’ van campaign, the world’s largest knocking shop, aka The House of Commons has devised a new and spectacular plan to solve the ‘problem’ of immigration. This Bill if passed would significantly reduce rights of appeal; restrict migrants’ access to services including private rented accommodation, bank accounts and NHS services by reference to immigration status; establish new arrangements for investigating sham marriages and examining persons departing the UK; and make various other changes related to immigration controls.
It has been a month since a report was released revealing British students are amongst the lowest in a league table for literacy and numeracy in Europe and Asia, and this Bill gives the Brits another chance to prove to the world just how doltish they truly are. The adults are more than a bit thick too.
If the Bill is passed, and becomes law, in practice, it is only mildly more painful than the existing immigration system. And even that is debatable.
Just over three years ago I attempted to get a girlfriend into the UK from Lebanon (non-EU) to do her Master’s degree. Assuming she would have passed the relevant literacy and numeracy tests required by the University (she has better English than most Brits, and she was working as a maths teacher when I met her so, no problems there) and got a place, there were two main Home Office hoops for both of us to jump through.
Firstly I would have to prove that I had accommodation for her (Never? I was going to stick her in the garden shed); secondly I had to prove I had sufficient income and savings to support her (No! We were going to live on fresh air) and this was because she would not be allowed to get a night or weekend job in the UK. In addition there were time restrictions on how many years she could stay here, and the usual humiliation of registering with the police. In the event we decided it was more trouble than it was worth and the idea was quickly dropped.
All this new Bill proposes is to potentially add a denial of NHS services to her (I prefer my loved ones to stay alive so we’d have gone private if we had to), a bank account (who would want one given current UK bank practices?) and the option of moving out and making her own life in a home of her own (unlikely given the amount of cowboy landlords out there).
In other words, these new proposals are not that much of a deterrent to immigration, but they create the illusion that the Coalition is doing something and will simultaneously reassure lower class Britain that significantly fewer foreigners are coming in and ‘taking our jobs/ women’- delete as applicable.
As an interesting side note, whenever you see the sad balding, beer-gutted, alcoholic middle-aged man, with the Mail Order Thai Bride young enough to be his daughter hanging off his arm, I’ve yet to hear a Brit lass saying, “These fucking Asian women coming over here and stealing our men.”
After spending half a decade working in the Middle East, this author foolishly returned to the UK and found out exactly what restrictions were in place for people coming from non-EU countries. In other words, I’ve an inkling of how rough the immigration experience is. I was restricted for three years (increased to five in 2010) from working in the military, Civil Service (local and central government), the police etc. I had the shocking experience of landing a job as a press officer with one of the largest constabularies in the UK only for the offer to be withdrawn upon receipt of my UK passport. This is to do with Enhanced CRB checks, but this ludicrous CRB system would not be in place if Humberside Police had done their job properly and informed Cambridgeshire Police that sex-offender Ian Huntley had moved to their patch. As a general rule entering the UK from a non EU country is a permanent sentence to low-paid menial or service work if you are a foreign immigrant and five years of it if you are a British National. That is an awkward fact that is kept very quiet for reasons we can only speculate on. It does seem though that it is not immigrants per se that make life difficult for British subjects, but the parade of clowns in Government.
This proposed Bill in fact says more about the mentality of the Septic Isle than it does about any foreigner wishing to enter it for whatever reason.
Its existence highlights that the Government are aware either they or previous Governments may have made mistakes in the past (let’s face facts it’s the Blair regime at fault), and that a section of the population is unhappy about it. One of the blisteringly ignorant slogans used on the Go Home vans was ‘Stirring up tension illegally?’ If the Coalition was honest it would have said, ‘Our Immigration Service is not fit for purpose.’
Yet, the only section of the British population that appear to be upset about immigration are the semi-educated, under-qualified workers using minimum wage as a safety net, or the terminally unemployed and unemployable. If someone from Eastern Europe can do the same job as them for a slightly lower rate, the employer is simply practicing free market capitalism. If the thick Brit has a problem with that, maybe they should raise their work standard slightly, or retrain in an area where demand for their new skill is high.
At the risk of plagiarising Doug Stanhope’s Go Home routine, I’ve never met one of these patriotic British people who has direct experience of an immigrant screwing up their lives. These guys all seem to be produced in the same factory, balding, if not completely bald BNP voters, bulky beer guts, with the inch flap of skin at the base of the skull. I could introduce those people to a number of Iraqis who do have direct experience of British people screwing up their livelihoods though thanks to the British Army, British Industry and the Blair Government.
Ultimately this Bill is a non-issue. Anyone that wants to get into the UK will find a way legally or illegally to get in. If they can’t do it via British Embassy and Home Office channels they’ll enter via the back of a truck- people trafficking has been a big black market business since the 19th Century.
But, given that in this article alone, problems with Education, the NHS, the banks, housing, the police and the attitude and mentality of a noticeable section of the population have been highlighted, why the hell would anyone want to go to the UK beats me. And the weather is rubbish. Britain has the population, UK-born and immigrant, legal or illegal that it deserves.
BY: Stephen Leece