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100,000 Eastern European migrants now free to claim full benefits in Britain worth tens of millions of pounds after EU ruling

Hundreds of thousands of migrants will gain full access to Britain’s generous benefits system within weeks.

When eight former Eastern Bloc countries joined the EU in 2004, rules were put in place to restrict access to welfare.

But these rules lapse on May 1 and cannot be renewed, raising fears of mass benefits tourism.

After just three months’ ‘residency’ in the country, eastern European migrants will be able to claim hundreds of pounds a week in jobseeker’s allowance, council tax and housing benefits.
Previously they had to work for a full year before being able to claim welfare.

Critics said Labour made a ‘huge mistake’ when agreeing that the rules would last for just seven years and called safeguards ‘paper thin’.

Since the EU expanded in 2004, Britain has experienced its largest ever wave of migration – despite official predictions that just 13,000 workers would want to move here.

Those searching for jobs have been required to pay £90 and sign up with the Worker Registration Scheme, run by the Home Office and Department for Work and Pensions. They were then denied access to benefits until they had completed a full year of work.

More than a million have joined the scheme and figures suggest there are some 625,000 still in work in the UK.

But from May migrants from Poland, Estonia, Latvia, Hungary, Lithuania, Slovakia, Slovenia and the Czech Republic will simply have to pass a ‘habitual residency test’ – showing they have been looking for work for three months.

The only other requirement is that they show benefits officials where they live, prove they want to settle here and show any employment history.

At that point they can get access to a council tax rebate, housing benefit worth hundreds of pounds a week and jobseeker’s allowance of £65 a week.

The change in rules will also lead to a rise in the number of eastern Europeans living in Britain who receive child benefit for children still living in their home country.

Figures last year showed there are already more than 32,000 children living in eastern Europe whose parents receive child benefit in Britain.

Under EU rules, child benefit is paid to all parents in the UK, even if their children have stayed in their home countries.

During the recession the numbers coming in from the so-called A8 countries dropped off.

However, figures released last month showed the number of eastern Europeans coming to work in Britain had risen for the first time in four years. Arrivals who registered with the WRS hit 116,760 – an increase of 7 per cent on a year earlier, when the total was 108,920.

Sir Andrew Green, chairman of MigrationWatch, said: ‘The previous government made a huge mistake in allowing people from much poorer states to claim benefits in Britain once the seven-year transition period ends. Such safeguards as exist are not even paper thin.’

A DWP spokesman denied migrants could ‘just come to the UK and start claiming benefits’. He said: ‘We have strict rules in place to protect the system from any abuse.

‘We will be keeping our benefit rules for people from abroad under review to ensure it’s secure.’
‘We have to remain in line with our national and international obligations.

‘However, it is necessary to protect the taxpayer and the benefit system from possible abuse. This is our number one priority.’

‘We have rules in place to prevent abuse of the benefit system and prevent benefit tourism.’

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March 4, 2011 Posted by | Asylum Seekers, Illegal Immigrants, Immigration, uk, UK Border Agency, UK Government, UKIP | , | Leave a comment

Anti Immigration Sentiment Soars in Britain

In last year’s general election in Britain, both the Conservatives and Labour addressed the issue of immigration and the popular feeling that uncontrolled immigration had caused problems for Britain. However, due to Britain’s electoral system, no party with an explicit anti-immigration agenda such as the British National Party or the United Kingdom Independence Party managed to make it into Parliament.

This contrasts with results in Holland and Sweden where the Freedom Party and the Swedish Democrats made major breakthroughs. In France, the National Front polls at 20%.

Now, a poll conducted in Britain for the left-wing Searchlight Educational Trust finds that 48% of voters would consider voting for a party that would tackle immigration and Islamic extremism provided it steered clear of violence and “fascist imagery”. 52% said that Muslims cause problems in the United Kingdom.

The poll found that two thirds of white Britons felt that immigration had made a negative contribution. They were joined by 43% of Asian Britons and 17% of black Britons. According to the poll, a strong correlation existed between economic insecurity and hostility to immigration. The results were slightly skewed by older pro-conservative voters whom the pollsters called cultural integrationists. Another interesting result is that more nonwhites than whites favor freezing immigration on till the economic situation improves.

While the full report will only be published on the web Monday night, it has already been embraced by the British left to attack the government of David Cameron and former Labour Prime Minister Tony Blair, whom the left considers a traitor.

David Cameron is attacked for his recent speech denouncing multiculturalism and calling for a muscular liberalism that would spell out more clearly what values are acceptable and what are inacceptable. Critics from the left condemn the Cameron speech for legitimizing the sentiments expressed in the poll. The Left and its journalistic mouthpieces, such as the Guardian and the Daily Mirror, also claim that the government’s current austerity policy is causing layoffs and lowering the standard of living. This is increasing economic insecurity and therefore fueling the dangerous attitudes surfacing in the poll.

Tony Blair is attacked for his “New Labour” approach that essentially jettisons politics based on class and therefore made working class Britons feel that they had been abandoned. If politics are not based on class, then the substitute is the identity-based politics expressed by the respondents to the poll.

While the survey was conducted by the well-regarded Populus polling organization, some critics are uneasy about questions that are too vague to permit conclusions. Another obvious criticism is that the poll is self-serving. Searchlight advertises itself as an organization that combats fascism by educational work. Obviously the more alarming the attitude towards immigrants is, the greater the need to fund the organization.

by Amiel Ungar

Immigration And Asylum Seekers In Calais - wanting to be in the UK

March 1, 2011 Posted by | Asylum Seekers, Blair, BNP, Cameron, Conservative Party, Daily Mirror, Guardian, Illegal Immigrants, Immigration, Labour, Liberal Party, Multiculturalism, Nationalism, UK Government, UKIP | , , , , | Leave a comment