Britain would be in a very bad way without immigrants. For a start, the NHS would be in big trouble and several surgeries in Torfaen might have to close. Throughout the UK, many low-paid menial tasks rely on immigrant workers and their net contribution to the British economy is very positive.
‘Freedom of movement’ is a two-way process. If – as UKIP speakers often seem to hope – all immigrants were to leave, the corollary would be that the 3 million British citizens abroad would have to return. These returnees would use the NHS but not contribute as much to the economy. So the overall impact would be bad.
If the real argument is about a drain on our economy, you need look no further than tax exiles – the people who take money out of Britain. Their unpaid taxes could balance the Treasury deficit and eliminate all excuses for spending cuts.
Some tax exiles own newspapers that day after day run anti-immigrant scare stories. The real cheats are the £multi-million tax dodgers who peddle stories about immigrants to divert attention away from the real robbers and cheats.