Leaving Europe will not reduce immigration and the Leave Campaigners are misleading the public by making this claim
The Leave Campaigners have argued that if we leave, we can still enjoy the same beneficial access to the EU market by adopting the Norwegian or the Swiss model. However, they fail to mention that both Norway and Switzerland have to abide by the same rules as EU members, without having any input into the rules. They also fail to mention that both have to accept the free movement of workers. So therefore, I ask Leave to explain how they will reduce immigration whilst accessing the EU market?
Leave Campaigners have also suggested to British Asians that if Britain left Europe then it would open up the door for immigration from outside the EU. This is not true. It is the British Government who put in place restrictions on visas. It is the British Government that requires British Nationals to earn at least £18,600 before a visa could be granted for their respective spouses. It was not the EU that made these rules and by leaving Europe the Government will simply not change its position. Leave also fails to mention that there are more than two million UK nationals living in the other 27 EU countries, out of which one million reside in Spain. Most of these people are enjoying their retired life. If we were to leave, what would happen to these individuals? Leave talks about the NHS but fails to mention that Britain relies more on foreign doctors than any major EU nation. More than a third of NHS doctors were born abroad. The UK is also among the most dependent on foreign nurses. In total 21.7 per cent of nurses were born abroad. Who will do these jobs if we were to leave?
Leave Campaigners fail to acknowledge that EU migrants to the UK pay more in taxes than they take out in benefits. There have always been pressure on housing, education and healthcare and this had existed before we joined the EU. We need the Government to invest in these services in line with what is required. However, those that are so desperate to leave will blame everything that is wrong on immigrants and EU. We are stronger, safer and better together. From cheaper holidays abroad to bringing criminals to justice, we are better off in Europe. Let us not risk and gamble our children and grandchildren’s future. Let us give them the opportunities that we have taken for granted.
Chair of Yorkshire and Humber Liberal Democrats Policy & EU Referendum Campaign