Mass Immigration, scare mongering??

(317 Posts)
Flickstix Thu 24-Jan-13 10:09:24

Am I being unreasonable to think it is a problem or am I just falling prey to media propaganda? The whole EU debate seems to have highlighted it but I would like to understand it better.

lainiekazan Thu 24-Jan-13 10:14:57

I actually think the Bulgarian/Romanian issue is a serious one. I just can't see how this country can possibly absorb the numbers who are anticipated to come here. Housing, schools... or large numbers of single men. In Germany there has been a huge growth in prostitution and sex trafficking as a direct result of many "womenless" men seeking work there.

Flickstix Thu 24-Jan-13 10:26:04

Is it something people aren't bothered by, or are but don't want to admit, or are just unsure?

Where I live mass immigration has had little to no effect, there are some Polish immigrants who have been absorbed into the community but that's about it.

pumpkinsweetieMasPudding Thu 24-Jan-13 10:30:22

I think it's very worrying that they can 'lose' immigrants.
The nhs is already fit to busting, so much so some hospitals are turning away labouring mothers.
Our hospitals are full, jobs are hard to find, schools are full and the government says it's due to the population increasing hmm

pumpkinsweetieMasPudding Thu 24-Jan-13 10:31:35

We need a system similar to Australia

Crinkle77 Thu 24-Jan-13 10:34:34

Some immigration is necessary, always has been and always will be. They often fill the gaps in employment and I would say in this country they often do the jobs that no one else wants to do. I live in an agricultural area and there are a lot of Polish who come to work on the farms. There are also a lot of immigrants who work in the hotel industry and as carers for the elderly.

Flickstix Thu 24-Jan-13 10:35:34

The Australian system is very good, it has a really broad range of occupations on the skilled occupation list, not just the high earning brackets. I think it also diffuses immigration tension as the Australians have faith in the system and that anyone coming into the country to live is able to support themselves and make a positive contribution to society.

jojane Thu 24-Jan-13 10:39:01

I really think that benefits need to be stopped for non uk citizens who have not paid taxes and NI for a certain amount of time, no council housing etc, people applying for visas should have to prove that they have a certain amount of cash AND a job to go to before they are allowed to settle here, we couldn't get government help wen we lived in France until we had even paying ino the system for 6 months. People who can't support themselves would have to go back to their home country, sounds harsh but we as a country need to stop being seen as a soft touch and easy to get benefits. People get child benefit for kids that aren't even in the country! I'm not racist and fully embrace diversity as long as they can support themselves. I have loved and worked in other countries but as son as the job ran out I came back to my own country.

Flickstix Thu 24-Jan-13 10:42:25

My ex husband was from a non EU country and on his visa had 'no recourse to public funds' for 5 years, which meant he was not allowed to claim any benefits, although he got free healthcare. He was also provided with free English language classes at our local college, this was about 10 years ago though.

If you are from an EU country are you immediately entitled to benefits other than schools/healthcare?

Bakingnovice Thu 24-Jan-13 10:42:27

I too think the Bulgarian/Romanian issue is worrying. In our small town we are inundated with Europeans most of whom are unable to find jobs or work. I volunteer in a charity and the number of people who come straight to us from the airport for assistance in completing benefit forms is growing by the day. In fact we are on the verge of closing up as we no
Longer have time to deal with the community we set up to help as there is no time and there are no spare resources. Helping someone who has just arrived in the uk with children and older family members in tow, nowhere to live and no money and speaks no English can take a whole day. Just putting them through to the right agency can take hours. We are a small voluntary group set up to assist a local youth group. Instead we are struggling with assisting immigrants. God knows how other services are coping. My heart breaks for the children. They always look bewildered, anxious, displaced and hungry.

mrsjay Thu 24-Jan-13 10:44:25

Imigrants have always came to Britain Immigrants have always been spoken about like this the scottish people round me are a few genrations of polish Indian some Italians it has always been the same, I am more concerned about people being trafficked into the Uk they are offered a dream to get out of poverty in their own country,

ballinacup Thu 24-Jan-13 10:46:29

Jojane, immigrants do have to prove all of those things before getting a visa.

EU immigrants don't, because they don't need visas due to the EU free movement of people policy.

Flickstix Thu 24-Jan-13 10:47:36

I think the difference here is mass immigration, immigration can be a good thing and have a positive effect on a country but I think mass immigration can cause a lot of problems, from what I understand.

Flickstix Thu 24-Jan-13 10:49:51

Where does the government stand on this? I assumed that the tories would want to limit mass immigration, or does the economic benefit of being in the EU outweigh the economic strain of mass immigration?

Flickstix Thu 24-Jan-13 10:51:12

Also, how do other comparatively affluent EU countries deal with mass immigration and the strain it puts on their health services/benefit systems?

alemci Thu 24-Jan-13 10:52:29

I don't think it is scaremongering. There is a housing shortage and there are huge waiting lists for social housing. Do we want everywhere concreted on and no green fields and flooding. If more people come where will they live? Why should they be prioritised when the people already here are on the council waiting list?

Alot of our young people are unemployed. If more people arrive it makes the job market even more competitive and drives down wages.

The situation in schools and hospitals and not enough midwives.

I live in Greater London and it feels overcrowded now. Why do we need anymore people here?

The lady from Boston on Question time last week having Polish people sleeping rough on her land and being homeless. People sleeping in sheds and being exploited for high rents. Problems with sewage and hygene.

also if we go to another European country, would we be entitled to any council housing or free translators?

I keep hearing about the benefit to the economy etc but what is it doing for the ordinary working classes who can't afford a cleaner etc.

I don't agree with people being given child benefit for kids that don't even live here when our own taxpayers have had theirs cut.

N.B. My paternal grandparents were immigrants.

pumpkinsweetieMasPudding Thu 24-Jan-13 10:57:39

I agree alemci, we just Don't have the space and Britons should be given priority.
No other country allows others before their own.
I'm all for foreigners coming here, if they have skills, are wealthy, in true danger or are of use in the public sector but we seem to be letting every Tom duck or harry in and letting them stay

I think depends on where you live. I live about equal distance to two hospital. One is in a very posh chocolate box town. There's no one who is not white and british when I went to the A&E there last weekend. On the other side, there's this bigger more 'common' city. I've been to its A&E a few times and there are always eastern europeans. (And many people in track suits etc). I'm sure people who live in that chocolate box town will think there isn't any problem mass immigration.

Flickstix Thu 24-Jan-13 10:59:29

I live in a chocolate box town and haven't seen much immigration, but when I go to our nearest city it's another story.

elizaregina Thu 24-Jan-13 10:59:51

There are several problems with the immigration we have now and as my polish sister in law says ( she has been here for 25 years, has never claimed benefits and is a high tax payer now),

when you have a large amount of people coming in - you are going to have a high amount therefore of good, hard working people who will benefit the uk, but the rest as SHE says are people " quite frankly poland is happy to see the back of".

ie, 100 people coming in, 80% are great, 20% bad, becomes far more problematic when you are dealing in very high numbers.

Thats one problem, and when I say problematic people I mean what I have personally been exposed to where I live - in dense housing. There about 5 houses up and down my road with lodgers living in them; of moslty EU origin, a few Polish but the main problems seem to be consitently coming from the Lithuanian and Romanian people, usually young men.....

stabbings - anti social behaviour leading to severe reduction in the quailty of daily life for the other residents etc on an almost daily basis; down to smaller things like never parking properly, blocking the pavement - drug dealing and litter. The police are in almost weekly attendance to these houses - and an ambulance has been seen outside a fair few times as well as council involvement.

The other problem is - resources. We have been in one of the most hardest hit areas and the hospitals have put lives at risk, due to high numbers of people and we are not prepared for it and we have little money to cope and expand to deal with it.

Our hospital has been closing its doors now for a long time on a regular basis - I do know of women turned away in labour, and I am terrified at the prospect of any of my family needing the local hospital with the sheer amount of horror stories coming out of it.

Schools, doctors - is widely known here to be under immense pressure.
One school - primary is 79 - 90% non english speaking, being predominanlty Eastern European.

The school that my DD is at - has however a broader European mix - from EE but also Spanish , French, German , Amercain. I would say 60 - 70% English origin and the rest a mix, and I LOVE that.
As my polish DSIl says - she doesnt blame anyone for coming here or anywhere else to make a better life ( thats what she did) - BUT she thinks our goverment is utterly ridulous in making such a range of pull factors to come here....they are disproportionate to the benefits you can claim in Poland. Its not a level playing field.

The bottom line is - do we really want other countries undesirables to come here as well as having to deal with our own.

And can we " afford" the volume of people we have coming here, can we cope with them? And can we cope - physically and financially with any more?

All the polish I know have been here for a long time, one is second generation and she and her family dont understand whats going on, another has just finished studying she has been here for about 6 years now, and she is the same, another friend was here maybe 12 years and then my DSIL> all of them say the same thing.

manicbmc Thu 24-Jan-13 11:01:18

We have always had large amounts of immigrants coming to this country.

These days though, we are just as able to go to theirs (or any other EU country).

I am a citizen of the world.

pumpkinsweetieMasPudding Thu 24-Jan-13 11:03:13

There is a problem in the town next to me, without sounding racist it is like walking into another country. In every shop there are foreign workers, foreign taxi drivers, and everywhere you go there are foreigners.
The hospital in that town is overcrowded, the midwives don't have the time to properly support you as they are so overstretched.
It is a problem yet the government isn't doing a thing to control it

Sallyingforth Thu 24-Jan-13 11:07:54

It does worry me greatly. We have always had immigration and it's been good for the country in many ways. We would be much poorer without it.
But I cannot see how we can cope with the large numbers predicted to come here. There is no work for them and no housing.

jojane Thu 24-Jan-13 11:08:04

I think unless you are British you should not get any government help bar emergency medical help as per the e111 or what ever the current system is, you should get billed for all other medical dental schooling etc you use, if you work and pay taxes then yes you can access public services for free. I don't understand how polish etc can come over here and get housed and benefits when British people can't get this without being on waiting lists for years etc as have to pay private rent etc. the school are overcrowded, nhs is going to combust soon, people are beig taxes so much they can't spend any money so the economy is going to go down the pan, Eastern European s are coming over and working but then sending half the money back home so the economy is being drained of its cash flow

OneMoreChap Thu 24-Jan-13 11:09:56

There is no immigration problem.
There is a perceived benefit system/housing system problem, where people are alleged to arrive here and get our housing, take our benefits...

I've spoken to many young people who hate them effing Poles... but wouldn't dream of working early shift in a cafe/ or in a field...

RichManPoorManBeggarmanThief Thu 24-Jan-13 11:12:18

These days though, we are just as able to go to theirs (or any other EU country).

But do you want to? That's the question because no-one I know is harbouring any ambitions to move to Romania. Open borders only work when there are no benefits and complete fluidity of the labour market (e.g. regardless of any other consideration, everyone follows the money so the labour market balances out- if there are too many people in one location, wages fall, and people go to where there is a labour shortage and wages are higher). In reality, this will never happen for a number of "real life" factors.

jojane Thu 24-Jan-13 11:13:26

The problem is we can't go to any other country in the eu and straight away be housed, given free healthcare and money to live on without first having paid something into the system. Immigration works if there are people going in AND out of the country at similar rates.
Also hand in hand with this is that job are bein outsourced to china and India reducing the amount of low level jobs available, job that school leavers traditionally took before working their way up, call centres an production etc.

Flickstix Thu 24-Jan-13 11:13:52

The thing is if you are a working immigrant you will be paying national insurance, therefore you are fully entitled to healthcare, and rightly so, but why is there an increasing deficit in the NHS?

There is nothing wrong with wanting to make a better life for yourself and your family, I would move Heaven and Earth for my children, but perhaps the EU should be concentrating it's powers on making Romania, Bulgaria etc better places to live so people wouldn't feel the need to escape.

CaroleService Thu 24-Jan-13 11:15:29

In pure numbers terms, I don't think so - if every town in Britain acquired a percentage of the incoming workers, that is. The problems recently discussed in the media seem to arise because a significant number of immigrants are drawn to one small area, because of seasonal work associated with it (Boston = agriculture), which mean that services in that area are swamped whereas 30 miles away there is no impact at all.

Flickstix Thu 24-Jan-13 11:16:09

jojane - The problem is we can't go to any other country in the eu and straight away be housed, given free healthcare and money to live on without first having paid something into the system.

But surely you can? Why does it work that way for Britain and no other EU country, I thought the whole idea was that we are governed by the same rules?

Flickstix Thu 24-Jan-13 11:17:50

Do you think the arrival of immigrants from Romania & Bulgaria en masse will create tensions between them and the established Polish?

RichManPoorManBeggarmanThief Thu 24-Jan-13 11:18:22

The problem is that the Uk actually needs to reduce its population, not increase it because we are not suddenly going to produce a million jobs out of our backsides. The UK is a declining economy (stagnating, best case) with no global competitive advantage in anything other than financial markets, due in part to a fluke of time zones. That's the reality. There is no point hoping that suddenly we're going to become like China, because it wont happen.

Immmigration in the 90's early noughties was absorbed because we were riding the back of the Asian Tiger, but now the Asian Tiger is no longer offering freebies

elizaregina Thu 24-Jan-13 11:18:47

Not every single person that does work here though does pay NI.
One problem house we had they were working at the local car wash place cash in hand - it was all connected to the landlords where they lived.

I can see how someone who lives elesewhere in my town wouldnt see there is a problem, where I live is very dense housing, my road has a real mix on it - always has.....we walk into town etc ....I can see how someone who lives in more spacious housing on the edge, perhaps drives more, deosnt use our town which is noitourisly ugly - uses some nicer towns near by, hasnt had to use the hospital and sends children to private schools, wouldnt neccasily be aware of the problems in other parts,

however that could also mean the problems our town faces are soley on our road and maybe one or two others and therefore - a problem for us - but not neccasrily in the bigger picture.

RichManPoorManBeggarmanThief Thu 24-Jan-13 11:19:29

I thought the whole idea was that we are governed by the same rules?

Well that's the theory, but how it works is that the EU makes a ruling, the UK follows it, and everyone else does what they like

Flickstix Thu 24-Jan-13 11:20:29

I'm really surprised Cameron hasn't addressed mass immigration....

alemci Thu 24-Jan-13 11:21:13

Yes but drive around any housing estate where I live and most of the residents are not British so they are being housed. My mother met someone who worked for a local borough in housing and she told my mum that the directive was to give newcomers housing priority. An almost sticking up 2 fingers attitude to all those people languishing on the waiting list for many years who are probably paying council tax.

Where my DC went to primary school used to be mainly British. Now when I went to work on the tube the majority of mums or dads taking to children to the school were non British and they have had to extend the school. a few years ago it wasn't full.

I have no problem with individuals and I don't hate anyone but there are just too many people coming not just from Eastern Europe but going to say Holland first then rolling up here when they get kicked out for not working etc.

I do think it depends where you live. In say Devon or Cornwall or West country (DS lives there) it isn't so obvious.

MummytoKatie Thu 24-Jan-13 11:21:29

I think that "Scary immigrants come to the UK and take all our benefits and housing whilst being generally scary" is an excellent way of selling newspapers.

That doesn't mean at there are not problems but it does mean we need to be careful taking things at face value.

For example of the two people who first replied to the OP one commented on the problems of lots of young single men coming whilst the other expressed concern about the impact on labour wards. These two things can't simultaneously be true so there is some press manipulation in there.

As a country one of our biggest problems is the aging population. It really is a ticking time bomb as people are living so much longer whilst people are having less and less babies. Mass working immigration is wonderful for dealing with this problem - tax payers able to start immediately - none of the whole having to educate them to the age of 18 first lark that you would have if people just had more babies - they just turn up and start paying.

Obviously if immigrants are coming and just claiming benefits then that wouldn't happen but I'm not convinced that is true. After all we also hear a lot of stories about immigrants "stealing" our jobs so they again this is a contradiction.

Overall though I don't think that Big Dave is a person who is particularly bothered about being nice to poor Romanians - if we are staying in Europe and allowing this level of immigration and not limiting benefit access then it is because he thinks doing so will maximise his chances of re-election. His best way to do this is to do what is best for the economy.

I wouldn't trust him as far as I can throw him to do the "right thing" for anyone other than himself and his little gang of pals and for that reason strangely enough I sort of trust him!

elizaregina Thu 24-Jan-13 11:21:50


its not a level playing field - you simply get more money here.

As someone said you dont see a great flow of people going to poland or bulgaria.

This is one of the problems - everyone seems to know exaclty what you get here - and we all know we have been extremly good to our immigrants with interpreters - housing etc....however its not so clear what we could get should we go elsewhere, in terms of helping us to assimilate into another country.

I want to know - I want to move!

FlipFlopFloss Thu 24-Jan-13 11:24:48

I am totally ignorant about immigration tbh.

I wonder if its all propoganda and can people really just come to the UK and get housed and benefits?? Really?? Is it that simple??

I was out of work for a while last year and had to jump through hoops to claim job seekers allowance - which by the time I qualified for it, had found another job. But the amount of paperwork and checks they did on me (I was born in the UK to UK born parents and grandparents etc etc). I read the sensational headlines and used to think OMG thats disgusting - but since my jobseekers claim I wonder how true it can be. If me a UK born citizen who has always worked and paid tax can struggle to get a benefit then surely someone from Bulgaria/Poland (elsewhere from EU) cannot just rock up and say yeah - child benefit and a house please????

If this is the case and people can get benefits for just being here (before finding employment) can anyone tell me where else in the world or the EU me and my family can go and expect the same treatment on arrival?

If everywhere offers the same then I suppose its fair enough - but what is it about the UK that makes it so favourable??

These are genuine questions I would like helpmin understanding.

elizaregina Thu 24-Jan-13 11:26:35

"For example of the two people who first replied to the OP one commented on the problems of lots of young single men coming whilst the other expressed concern about the impact on labour wards. These two things can't simultaneously be true so there is some press manipulation in there."

I am commenting personally on where I live and the problems we have had to encounter on our street - the anti social problems have been mainly coming from young men with a few girls there but mostly men.

That is the housing on offer where I live, ie lodgers in rooms,

elsewhere in the town - more families live - the women in the families are having babies.

Not everyone is reading the papers to get an idea of whats happening,

Some people are living and breathing the negative aspects of this every single day.

MrsDeVere Thu 24-Jan-13 11:27:15

People have been terrified of 'mass immigration' for decades.

Why do we think that this time it we really will sink into the sea?

I live in an inner city with high rates of immigration. My borough tends to attract those from the working classes and first generation immigrants.

I am white working class on a low income. I also work in the public sector. So according to Griffin et al I am the very person who should be angry/worried/pissed off/marginalised etc.

Well I am not. My life is not made worse by the fact I live among poor immigrants anymore than it is made better by my proximity to the pretty, villagey, middle class enclave up the road.

They both bring their advantages and disadvantages. Both groups can suck the life out of any resource going or they can lend new skills and experiences.

The things that worry me about new immigrants are the same things that worry me about people in general:

Sexism and sexual harassment
Child abuse and neglect.

There is no doubt that some people take a while to assimilate to a new culture and want to hide behind what they say are cultural practices.

Physical punishment
Domestic Violence
Stigma attached to disability

for example.

But we have laws and education and immigrants are subject to the same criminal laws as natives.

There will be no mass immigration. No more than when the BNP sent round leaflets stating as FACT that 80,000 turkish muslims of working age were about to descend on us.

The government are trying to get people back on side. They are using this to scare people into voting for them.

I am aware that my views are unlikely to be popular. But then I am sick of wankers like Griffin claiming he represents me.

Portofino Thu 24-Jan-13 11:31:15

You cannot just turn up and be given benefits/free housing even as an EU citizen. There are restrictions in place here Also, If you move country as an existing benefit claimant, it is your country of origin that pays the benefits. You can normally do so for up to 3 months.

manicbmc Thu 24-Jan-13 11:31:22

What MrsDeVere said pretty much word for word.

mrsjay Thu 24-Jan-13 11:32:27

The government are trying to get people back on side. They are using this to scare people into voting for them.

I am aware that my views are unlikely to be popular. But then I am sick of wankers like Griffin claiming he represents me.

I am with you all the way Mrs DV before griffin it was the national front spouting the same shite to the same scared people,

manicbmc Thu 24-Jan-13 11:34:26

Some of the comments on this thread could have come straight out of the 50s hmm

photographerlady Thu 24-Jan-13 11:37:31

In being an immigrant to the UK I can say in my eyes its not a one size immigration issue. I have lived here 12 years, with 3 different visas. Each of these cost me over 1K each and I have no access to benefits or public funds. I went to school here and paid a pretty penny for it, I worked here as a highly skilled worker and married here after a 6 year relationship with am adorable little stocky English chap. The immigration system here has treated me fairly, I've worked and paid taxes every month I have been here and passed my Life in Britain test and other visa requirements as an Non EU immigrant. I wish it was easier in some aspects but rules are rules.

elizaregina Thu 24-Jan-13 11:39:24

our government is NOT chasing other countries for money spent by thier nationals in our NHS. FACT.

what makes you think its any better at chasing them for benefits.

Other countries however are very good at chasing us.

Our country is drowing in an in effcient bearucratic nightmare.

We are not good at record keeping.

On radio four this morning there was talk of a box of about 20 thousand I think they said - details of visa applications!

This box has been moved from Croyden to Sheffield, and someone happened to come across it.

One Man has been waiting for 10 years to have his wife with him!

dreamingofsun Thu 24-Jan-13 11:44:30

onemorechap - i don't understand how you think housing is a 'preceived' problem. 2 bed flats start at 150k where we live. How on earth can someone on an average salary afford to buy that?

Bakingnovice Thu 24-Jan-13 11:49:11

It's the children and the exploited I worry about. My town attracts many many immigrants and many houses have been bought by big landlords and house multiple European families. When taking my dd to preschool I see many school age children stood outside shops or playing outside. Not all of them are allocated a school place. One lady I spoke to said her son wasn't attending school as it was too far and she wanted to wait for the oversubscribed school which was closer, or would like a council taxi for her dc. The children don't look well fed, or cared for. My dc school has many new children and there is a violence issue but mainly because these children are displaced, unable to communicate, make friends, discuss their fears. Also, landlords are housing multiple families and lets not even start on the exploitation of young women. I am all for immigration, but we need to limit this so that we can properly provide for and care for those that do come. The anti social behaviour is also an issue.

The young people tend to skip school and stay out on the street late. Having worked with Europeans in my voluntary role I personally feel that those who come here for work and education tend to settle better. It's the poor lower class groups who seem to wander from city to city looking for seasonal cash in hand jobs who settle badly. Also in my area there is a huge problem with racism as many of the new Europeans, especially those from Lithuania/Romania/Poland tend to view the generations old Asians who have been here for years and years as racially inferior. I have personally witnessed a polish man push an elderly Asian guy out of the way in a the queue and racially abused him. Sadly many of the European and former soviet nations are not as tolerant as we are.

I wish there was more we could do but we can't.

alemci Thu 24-Jan-13 11:52:09

About 15 years' ago my mother worked as a teacher in the local borough I mentioned earlier. She worked as a teacher supporting primary school children who needed help in English who were immigrants. She did some home visits. Most of them lived in social housing and she commented on how nice the houses were with brand new carpets etc. These parents were not working.

Meanwhile my DH and I were struggling with 2 young children with one on the way and he earned slightly too much to receive any benefits, our mortgage was going up and we were really struggling. Our house was not very nice and we couldn't afford to do anything to it.

Before letting anyone else in, I would love the government to see who is here. Who was living in the allocated housing and if it is being sublet which I believe it often is. Who is working and paying taxes rather than cash in hand etc. Who is on benefits and not tried to get a job.

Can't see it happening but I wish we could learn the truth. I know it is not all bad but I think the indigenous working population have been treated badly by successive governments.

Also often immigrants bring their own families and elderly in so they still need to be cared for and then the immigrants will become old and need care so I am not convinced about this ageing population argument.

Also if the indigenous working population cannot get affordable housing then they will not have big families as they don't get any help.

pumpkinsweetieMasPudding Thu 24-Jan-13 12:00:00

There is a problem in the town next to me, without sounding racist it is like walking into another country. In every shop there are foreign workers, foreign taxi drivers, and everywhere you go there are foreigners.
The hospital in that town is overcrowded, the midwives don't have the time to properly support you as they are so overstretched.
It is a problem yet the government isn't doing a thing to control it

I'm not sure putting 'without sounding racist' changes how you sound, TBH.

How do you know they're 'foreign' as opposed to 'British but not the same colour as me' or 'British but speak another language'? Do you ask every single one of them?

mrsjay Thu 24-Jan-13 12:08:12

I go into my corner shop and see a pakistani man working I talk to my neighbour and I hear a polish accent I think putting 'without' sounding racist really cuts it tbh,

MrsDeVere Thu 24-Jan-13 12:19:26

alemci well let me set your mind at rest.
I visit immigrant families in their homes..

Many live in one room, share a kitchen, have little furniture and bare floors.

Lots have nice homes but they tend to be the ones who are working and qualified or live with their extended family.

I have never visited the home of a first generation, workless family and found that they live in adequate accommodation, let alone luxury.

The families I work with have disabled children.

MrsDeVere Thu 24-Jan-13 12:22:58

Yeah. Its the polish's fault that MWs are overstretched.

Nothing to do with the running down of the NHS so it can eventually be dismantled altogether.

And for those that think not allowing immigrants access to benefits will stop them coming.

It doesn't. It happens already. Children just go cold and hungry. People live 'underground' so their kids go uneducated and unprotected.

But I do so love to hear the stories of 'when my mum/cousin/neighbour used to work' and the 'well my mate works for the housing and she says' anecdotes.

Its like hearing about a parallel universe.

pumpkinsweetieMasPudding Thu 24-Jan-13 12:23:05

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alemci Thu 24-Jan-13 12:25:13

Maybe things have changed Mrs De Vere but my mum wouldn't lie about it. Perhaps it depends where you live. This was one of the London Boroughs.

However, Mrs De Vere I think it is great what you do. must be very hard for families with disabled children.

'They are definitely foreign, in this town there is also high rates of crime.'

Are you serious?

MrsDeVere Thu 24-Jan-13 12:33:08

I live in a London Borough too.
I am not accusing your mum of lying. That would be very rude smile (that isnt a mean, passive aggressive smilie btw)

But people make assumptions with little to go on.

The MW who came to visit me thought we were workless and eyed up our big tv. tutted that my OH was in bed (once I had corrected her statement that I WAS a single parent).

We both work, the tv was a present and my OH was in bed because he has Multiple Sclerosis.

Chances are she could go home to her friends and family and talk about the family she visits with a lovely council house (its ours, we bought it), flat screen tv, the woman on her 5th baby sat on a chaise lounge (sp) whilst her lazy arse boyfriend slept upstairs (husband)

I have been caught out myself. When you walk into a house you make snap judgments. I have learnt over the years to check myself because, boy - can you be wronger than a wrong thing. Families can lie too. Because they are proud and want to put on a show. You can be in a lovely front room and the rest of the house is empty (which is why SWs are required to check upstairs on CP visits)

There is also the temptation to exaggerate a bit when you have a willing audience.

"Without sounding racist"

Well, you failed there.

charlearose Thu 24-Jan-13 12:35:12

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

cory Thu 24-Jan-13 12:35:34

Britons do go and live if not in Roumania, then at least in France, Spain, Germany, Sweden etc. We have Mumsnetters in that position, even.

Other European countries also deal with the same immigrants, the same refuges, the same discussions over welfare and support. And quite a few European countries spend more on welfare than the UK.

But funnily enough, ime, they each think they're alone and "no other country does this".

OhlimpPricks Thu 24-Jan-13 12:38:40

I think we ought to adopt the same immigration regulations as Australia. To get our Australian visa to allow us to live there permanently (eventually) we had to jump through a lot of hoops.
We both had to pass medicals and have chest X-rays to ensure we would'nt be an immediate drain on the Australian healthcare system.
We had to prove competence in in the English language.
We had to gain points by having qualifications in particular occupations, where there were skill shortages.
We had to pay almost a thousand pounds to apply. This was non refundable even if your application is not successful.
We had to prove we could support ourselves financially, as we would be unable to claim any kind of benefits for two years.

cory Thu 24-Jan-13 12:42:57

charlearose Thu 24-Jan-13 12:35:12
"maybe with regards to immigrants claiming benefits if they could only claim the equivalent amount in the uk to what it is in there own country i.e. whatever the amount of benefit you get in Poland you get in the uk it wouldn't be so attractive and would "

So the UK would be obliged to pay out Swedish level benefits to me then? grin

Should they be obliged to provide subsidised childcare as well?

Bakingnovice Thu 24-Jan-13 12:47:27

Mrs dv is right. Many many of these families are very poor. They live in substandard housing with poor diets and very little money. It's the educated workers who tend to buy their own house, get good jobs and live better lives. The families I work with have very little, and a lot of the poorer children are either malnourished or badly nourished through eating cheap Takeaways. The media uses mass immigration to scare no get without a doubt. But those that live in mixed communities have our own experiences to share.

mumzy Thu 24-Jan-13 13:07:12

I think it is a serious problem and we should be concerned. I'm not against immigration but we need to ensure there is enough suitable housing, schools and public services for everyone before admitting more people into the country. The numbers were seriously underestimated last time and 10 times more people came than was anticipated. I live in an area where lots of the recent immigrants settled and the strain on all the services has been immense.(ie. not enough reception school places this year, difficulty getting drs appointment, terrible antenatal services due to massive numbers of pregnant women, long waiting lists and lack of good social housing, 3 bed houses housing 8-10 adults) As a result there is a lot of tension from the locals towards all immigrants and it has become a very segregated population. A free school opened near me recently and 80% of the pupils there are the children of recent immigrants. A further 3 free schools have been proposed to meet the future demand for places.

FlipFlopFloss Thu 24-Jan-13 14:02:29

I am glad to hear there are other countries paying more welfare than the UK.

As someone with no job (in a few weeks) and an existing medical condition I would like the heads up as to where the best place/country for me to go where I can get a house, benefits and free medical care? Would be good for me to compare there and here before I make my decision (and research further) as to where I should reside

I have about 6 weeks left in my job - maybe enough time to save for my airfare or ferry. I speak a little French, German and Spanish but will consider anywhere as there is FA to keep me here anymore.

I am seriously interested as i wont be entitled to very much here for several weeks according to the CAB.

OneMoreChap Thu 24-Jan-13 15:01:48

dreamingofsun Thu 24-Jan-13 11:44:30

onemorechap - i don't understand how you think housing is a 'preceived' problem. 2 bed flats start at 150k where we live. How on earth can someone on an average salary afford to buy that?

And that's connected to immigration how, exactly?
The snide answer used to be "live somewhere else, then" but average house prices everywhere are ridiculous.

I'm on what I'd consider a good screw, and I'd struggle to buy a house on the old mortgage rules of 3 x first income = 2nd income.

Largely, Thatcher's "big idea" of flogging council houses and then preventing councils building more landed us in the kack.

dreamingofsun Thu 24-Jan-13 15:52:22

onemorechap - thatcher was years ago, people can't keep harping back to her and blaming her for all the problems.

lack of new supply and increased house demand = high prices. so yes, the more people moving here = higher demand = higher prices. Or we increase supply and concrete over the south of england.

alemci Thu 24-Jan-13 16:24:32

It is connected to immigration one more chap because there may have been more social housing available for people already here and not so much demand for housing whether bought or rented. Less housing to go round with more people arriving and needing to be housed.

Also the people who bought their council houses through MT's scheme did very nicely and I worked with some of them in the early '90's who were boasting about it. Meanwhile I had to buy my house at market price

the people arriving to the UK have families and their need is put first. Councils admitted this in the end even though they had been denying it for years. As I said earlier, if you go to a local council estate locally there are lots of immigrants there. They need to live somewhere

Everytime private houses are built some of it has to be allocated to social housing.

Mrs De Vere I take on board your points and it is easy to make snap judgements.

I just think we are full up and should sort out who is already here before allowing anyone else to come unless they have some money and have something to offer us and adopt the Australian system

OneMoreChap Thu 24-Jan-13 17:07:28

Good god.

Immigration is responsible for house price inflation now?
Smaller families, divorce, both partners working, having to move for a job.

We're full up... and shouldn't have any more unless quite often has the unvoiced unless they're white and Christian

Yes, it's scare mongering.

the people arriving to the UK have families and their need is put first. Councils admitted this in the end even though they had been denying it for years.

OK, I'll bite. Give me a cite for that please.

alemci Thu 24-Jan-13 18:10:06

I'm not great at linking and I am cooking dinner but Margaret Hodge discussed this issue in 2007 to do with Barking and Dagenham.

I am not saying that immigrants push house prices directly up but maybe there is more demand for people buying a house privately as they cannot get housed by the council anymore and they are having to do this buy taking on a huge mortgage. Of course there are other reasons as you stated as well

Footface Thu 24-Jan-13 18:17:06

There is not enough housing for the people already here. There is just not enough of everything. Space, jobs, schools, hospital. It has to stop before we burst

whois Thu 24-Jan-13 18:18:38

The catering staff at my place of work in Lomdon are 90% polish. The cleaning staff are 100% black Africans.

Not sure why this should be, pay must be minimum wage at least and would have thought there were plenty of English people who would want to work in the canteen who haven't currently got jobs.

No real point to this post. I just find it odd that nearly all the canteen staff are polish, almost like the catering company specifically targets them.

LaVitaBellissima Thu 24-Jan-13 18:36:47

"We prioritise the needs of an individual migrant family over the entitlement others feel they have. So a recently arrived family with four or five children living in a damp and overcrowded, privately rented flat with the children suffering from asthma will usually get priority over a family with less housing need who have lived in the area for three generations and are stuck at home with the grandparents."

That is the Margaret Hodge quote that Alemci was referring to from this Guardian article

LayMizzRarb Thu 24-Jan-13 18:42:47

My local Sainsbury employs a lot of Polish people. With the comparative difference in wages, it is very worthwhile for someone to come from Poland or elsewhere and work and save hard for a few years, then return to Poland, or any other Eastern European country with a nice nest egg to buy a property. Good on them - many Brits do it after all, by working in Arabia, Hong Kong etc coming back with funds to buy somewhere.
The big companies know this. They know they have a transitionary work force who may only be in the country a few years, and so pay the lowest wages they can get away with, and do whatever they can to cut costs, by not offering to pay double for Sundays BH's etc. people who will only be in the job for 3/4 years tops are not going to kick up a fuss.
Again, we should take Australia's example. No benefits, for migrant workers, including healthcare should be paid until someone has two years of NI contributions made . Australians can come over too the UK, work for 6 months, and then claim benefits and healthcare. Wrong

vadus Thu 24-Jan-13 19:31:45

The idea that we should only accept "skilled" migrants is flawed. First of all, who decides who is skilled? Businesses know best what employees they need, not the government. And foreign entrepreneurs can create jobs. Secondly, unskilled migrants benefit the economy too: they often do unskilled jobs better or more cheaply than unskilled British workers. More efficient/cheaper workers means more profits for firms. Let's tax that profit and use the proceeds to help British unemployed people get the training and qualifications they need to find good jobs. If we "protect" unskilled workers through restrictive immigration laws we are failing them and harming the economy.
Net immigration means a population growth and hence more strain on the health service and housing, but we should address this by fixing the housing problem and the problems of the NHS, which weren't caused by immigration and wont go away if we do restrict immigration.
Immigration can cause social frictions, but the way to address these is through measures to promote integration, not though caps or quotas on who enters the country. The failure of immigration policy in the last 10 years is that we haven't done enough to integrate migrants and redistribute the economic benefits of immigration, not that we have let too many in. And the anti-immigration lot continue to ignore the problem of integration.

PessaryPam Thu 24-Jan-13 19:41:04

Who cares, we are selling up and leaving. it will be someone elses problem soon.

A net tax payer x

alemci Thu 24-Jan-13 19:47:19

could someone tell me a positive of the Romanians and Bulgarians being able to come and live and work here at the end of the year?

MousyMouse Thu 24-Jan-13 19:48:37

I think it is scaremongering tbh.
it is not that the whole countries will knock at the door to be let in...
(uk is not the golden ticket the press is making it out to be, just have a look at expat forums ranting about 'quality of life' 'work-life-balance' 'size and quality of housing')

mathanxiety Thu 24-Jan-13 19:54:59

I second every word Mrs D V has said here.

Immigration of eastern Europeans to the US continues apace despite the almost complete lack of a social safety net and horrible public medical provision for them there if they run into hard times or poor health. Chicago is the largest Polish population centre outside of Warsaw. East Europeans dominate certain industries and services in some cities in the US, along with Irish and Mexicans. Roofing, limo driving, yard crews, etc, to name a few. They tend to be the starters of the sort of small businesses that are the bedrock of an economy and keep local communities ticking over.

Historically speaking, a lot of Irish people used to send money home that kept local economies afloat, and this happens with eastern European immigrants too. Those who bemoan the lack of EU input into making Romania and Bulgaria, etc., better places to live need to understand that most immigrants want to make a better life for themselves and have initiative to burn (proven by uprooting themselves and settling somewhere else), plus the desire to show those back home that they are doing ok, and especially the desire to send money back and make Romania and Bulgaria, etc., better places to live all by themselves.

Historically speaking, there was mass hysteria at the many waves of Irish people arriving in Britain over the last 150 years but that has hardly been the disaster many thought it would be.

chickensarmpit Thu 24-Jan-13 20:07:09

I never thought I would say this. Immigration needs to be capped now! I understand people are coming here for a better life but what about my kids? What is going to be left when my kids become adults? They'll be no housing, hospital beds wil be full, what about jobs? And school places. My tiny village doctors is struggling already but if other countries are allowed to have their people come here then we're fecked. The government need to sort this out now, it's getting beyond a joke and to be honest I fear for the future of my children.

lljkk Thu 24-Jan-13 20:09:05

Do I live in the most obscure corner of the country?
I am the only foreign-born parent I know of up at DC school (have been hanging around there for 9 years so I know quite a few parents, staff).

0.3% of the primary school population are non-white.

It's hard to detect an immigration problem here.

vadus Thu 24-Jan-13 20:10:53

Again, we should take Australia's example. No benefits, for migrant workers, including healthcare should be paid until someone has two years of NI contributions made . Australians can come over too the UK, work for 6 months, and then claim benefits and healthcare. Wrong

Surely the ideal situation would be one where British people can go and work in Australia, and have access to healthcare while they are there, and Australians can come and work in Britain and also have access to healthcare.

This kind of reciprocal, mutually beneficial arrangement is precisely what the EU provides.

Arguably, the reason why it didn't work out too well with the EU eastern enlargement had as much to do with other EU countries putting restrictions on immigration from Poland etc. as it does with us failing to introduce such restrictions. Eastern Europeans immigrants came here in part because they couldn't work legally anywhere else. Countries could all engage in a race to the bottom to see which can come up with the most unpleasant immigration policies but surely we're all better off if we can agree to be equally liberal.

FlipFlopFloss Thu 24-Jan-13 20:15:42

I am struggling to find another country that will take me as an unemployed supermarket worker/chambermaid/cleaner , give me benefits and eventually somewhere to live and thats before I worry about my existing medical condition. Really cant find anywhere else in Europe that would willingly take me and give me what I will eventually get here.

One thing that pissed me off very recently was when I was looking for employment at my nearby airport and was told by 3 of the large local hotels (large chains) that they had no vacancies for housekeepers etc. Not put off I spent a whole night up looking for jobs on the web and lo and behold the same hotels that less than 12 hours earlier had told me they were not recruiting nor had any vacancies were advertising on Eastern European websites for the very same jobs I wanted and asked after. So the next day I went into the hotels and asked about the positions, dressed smartly with my CVs and was told by (broken english speaking with an accent) reception staff that the manager was unavailable but they would pass on my CV - I as a british citizen was not even given the opportunity to apply - those from Eastern Europe were - thats not fair imo. I wanted a job. Any job (and have experience for the roles they were advertising for) and was prepared to work for the minimum wage but was never contacted. I have since popped in a few times to ask about vacancies and have never spoken to anyone with a British accent and am always told there are no vacancies.

So I am hoping some EU country is advertising somewhere just for British staff. I live in hope.

vadus Thu 24-Jan-13 20:24:30

could someone tell me a positive of the Romanians and Bulgarians being able to come and live and work here at the end of the year?

Can someone tell me a positive of Scots being able to come and live and work in England?

I doubt there will be a huge influx of Romanians and Bulgarians to Britain in 2014. Immigration restrictions on Romanians and Bulgarians will end in all EU member states, I'm sure many prospective migrants will prefer Germany or one of the Scandinavian countries over Britain.

Viviennemary Thu 24-Jan-13 20:32:56

I am bothered about the number of people a country this size should reasonably be able to support. And I think cashflow is a problem that should be tackled. Money going out of the country versus money coming in. Maybe it isn't really a problem because it is balanced out by tourism and so on.

I am uncomfortable with the idea of being like Australia given how they've treated their own indigenous population in the past!

Portofino Thu 24-Jan-13 20:54:33

It is a very difficult subject. I live in Brussels where 25% of the population are non Belgian and a huge number of people pay no or little tax in Belgium. Belgian did put in place the restrictions available to all EU countries to limit movement/working of ie Polish/Slovakian people initially which the UK did not.

But they also have a service cheque system in place where it illegal to hire, say domestic help, without buying the cheques, which insures that your cleaner etc is legal, insured, pays tax, pays NI etc. So it would be illegal for me to hire a Romanian working for less than minimum wage. I could be heavily fined, and if they had an accident in my house, I would be liable.

I am an EU immigrant and enjoy my right to live and work in another EU country. I pay (shedloads of) tax and we enjoy access to local health and education provision. I would be a hypocrite to deny the same opportunity to anyone else. But I do worry that the UK is too crowded and has a benefit system that is too complicated and discourages people from taking seasonal or low paid work, meaning that it is easier for employers to take on cheap labour from elsewhere.

Portofino Thu 24-Jan-13 20:58:01

Sorry - I sound a bit up myself there- but I think a lot of the fault lies with employers and the benefits system rather than the immigrants.

Flickstix Thu 24-Jan-13 21:10:26

Absolutely the fault is with the system. No one in their right mind can blame people for wanting a better life for themselves & their families. If I was a poor Romanian I with children to support and I heard you could have a better life in the UK I would be on the first plane over here.

Another one coming to say ditto to MrsDeVere

I hate this scaremongering. On an anecdotal level I have yet to meet anyone who has been affected by immigration. I do not know anyone who has lost out on a job, not received nhs care, lost out on housing etc..... In fact if it wasn't for immigrants, most of my friends and I would not have jobs. But no-one ever wants to talk about how much immigrants add to society, only what they take away. Immigrants have been ADDING £billions to the UK economy each year. Yes some immigrants may cost us, but more add to our economy.

Do those who oppose immigration oppose retired britons moving to france/spain/portugal and mis-using their healthcare systems, not paying taxes there, claiming uk state pensions etc....?

alemci Thu 24-Jan-13 21:32:09

True Flick but I think the UK government needs to sort it out and listen to its constituents.

I wouldn't mind living in the USA but it is not that straightforward.

Portofino Thu 24-Jan-13 21:35:35

Here, there were several families of Romanians living in the Gare du Nord for MONTHS. With small children and babies. In the station with no bathing or cooking facilities. In the perishing cold this week, there are other women begging on the street with babies. Maybe the UK is the mug in all this, but heck, when humanity and compassion comes into it, I would prefer that this was not allowed to happen.

Portofino Thu 24-Jan-13 21:37:53

pettyprudence - indeed not - and they are quick to move back when the exchange rate is not in their favour! Or they need an operation...

Flickstix Thu 24-Jan-13 21:41:28

alemci - Yes, I agree. I actually looked into moving to the US a few years ago and it is incredibly difficult!

morethanpotatoprints Thu 24-Jan-13 22:02:00

Aren't all these countries being mentioned part of the EU and aren't we also part of the EU. There is nothing anybody can do to stop anybody from the EU coming here.
The Politicians won't give a hoot though as its unlikely to affect their little insular world.

Jinsei Thu 24-Jan-13 22:25:41

It really isn't that straightforward for non-EU migrants to come to the UK either, so comparisons with Australia and the US are pretty meaningless. We have a points-based immigration system already. It's different for EU migrants, just as it would be different for us if we wanted to go to another EU state.

I live in an area which is very diverse, with lots of relatively recent immigrants. Many of the kids in dd's class have English as a second language. I am delighted by the rich experience this gives her. I don't fear for her future. I don't recognise the scare stories. I'm not saying that there aren't problems in some parts of the country, but it isn't my experience at all.

Mimishimi Fri 25-Jan-13 02:09:58

I get nervous but only because I look quite a lot like a Romanian or Bulgarian. I do understand that welfare provisions absolutely need to be tightened up - only after five years of contributing or something and then for a limited amount of time. I do not automatically assume that East European immigrants are feckless because my experience of them, even if they are very poor, is quite the opposite.

mathanxiety Fri 25-Jan-13 03:59:06

FlipFlopFloss -- somewhere in deepest, leafiest England, someone is laughing all the way to the bank about what they are able to get away with under current law.

Chickensarmpit, what is needed is an economy that grows enough and that is what the government should have as its priority. Take away the immigrants and you are still left with the NHS on its knees, a housing shortage, an education system that benefits only a fraction of students and sells the rest far short of what they need, a benefits and tax system that discourages casual or seasonal work, and a stagnating economy with a government committed blindly to austerity.

lljkk Fri 25-Jan-13 07:55:43

You forget about the ageing population, too, mathanxiety, elderly "native" British population are a larger % than they have ever been in past. Tomorrow take away the UK immigrants* and their kiddies, the working age population trying to raise kids & fund pensions reduces sharply in next 3 decades.

*how far back do we go in establishing whether someone is immigrant or native? Do we get to chuck out Michael Portillo & Michael Howard, for instance? Might be so benefits to this idea after all... wink

FreudiansSlipper Fri 25-Jan-13 08:18:12

Enoch Powell gave his Rivers of Blood speech in 1968 no doubt Nigel Farage will give a similar speech very soon as he no longer can witter on about Europe so much as we shall get to vote and people will get sucked into the fear that those nasty immigrants only come here to take our homes, nobsand spoil our way of life

It has not happened since 1968 and it will not suddenly happen. That is not to say immigration is always handled well it is not but lets look at why some town have so many immigrants it's down to local business people taking advantage of them and also others not wanting to take on menial work

And as for the Australian system well maybe you need to look at the way the indigenous people are treated before looking at Australia as an example and the backward attitudes towards racism

alemci Fri 25-Jan-13 08:24:36

maths wouldn't the housing shortage improve if there were not so many people on the social/council housing waiting list? I understand your comment about the NHS

My thinking would be to sort out who is already here. Give priority on the housing lists to those who have been waiting a long time and have actually contributed to the treasury not people who have just arrived.

Get people back into employment and try and assess if we need any skilled migrants

I don't understand why we would need anymore people in this already overcrowded little Island.

Surely now there are enough younger people in the country to sort out the ageing population problem.

MousyMouse Fri 25-Jan-13 08:30:37

alemci you forget that many forriners are not entitled to housing benefit and/or council housing for a long time. and anyway, I would say their input might be beneficial to housing stock. in many of these countries the houses/flats are bigger, better insulated. it is quite a culture shock to many to see how small and often bad the housing stock here is.

MousyMouse Fri 25-Jan-13 08:32:18

and besides, they come here to work (and pay taxes) and not to sign off on benefits (at least that is true for most of immigrants). living on benefits they can do in their country of origin.

alemci Fri 25-Jan-13 08:38:52

yes but the economy is pretty stagnant Mousey and there are not many jobs so I don't think anymore people should come for the time being. Also maybe the Eastern Europeans already here could help sort out the housing as many of them are are skilled craftsmen. Or the indigenous builders.

They can only work within the budget they are given by the housing association/council or private developer. Also the government seem to be very pro energy saving housing these days.

Sallyingforth Fri 25-Jan-13 10:10:09

I would like to be optimistic about this but the new countries are much poorer than Poland was and have fewer educated and qualified people.
It really does look as if there will be a wave of families coming in who don't speak English, are not able to work and just want to be housed and fed.
I would love to be wrong but I'm seriously worried about this.

maisiejoe123 Fri 25-Jan-13 10:33:37

I live near a large town (Slough) and there are immense problems there. There are schools where English isnt the first language, shops where English isnt spoken and it has a growing Roma population.

There have been problems with groups of them going into local shops and distracting the shop keepers whilst goods are stolen to such an extent that one of the owners who runs a small independant which he runs himself is thinking of closing as when he sees one of the group stealing something or making a run for it he cannot leave his shop as the others are ready to steal something else. He has been threatened and the police he says are very nervous about doing very much about it as it is classed as 'shop lifting'.

Could someone enlighten me. When a large family from say Romania arrive next year with no skills and no visible means of support what happens to them?

Bakingnovice Fri 25-Jan-13 11:11:54

Integration is the key here. Any immigration will fail if the immigrants do not integrate. Where I live there is a huge problem with attitudes. The indigenous white population is not happy about the new immigration from Europe, the Asian families are more accepted as they are now 3rd to 4th generation. The new eastern Europeans are very very racist towards the large Asian population. Only last week I was speaking to a polish colleague and he was saying Romanians should never be allowed in as they aren't white but descendants of Indian gypsy travellers. The irony was lost on him. In my area these attitudes have created another vile layer of racism which my small town has taken decades to eradicate. I am surprised that there are people who have never been affected by immigration. Perhaps that is because immigrants tend to stay away from the richer areas?

maisiejoe123 Fri 25-Jan-13 11:22:09

Baking - I agree integration is key. Like ensuring that everyone here and who use our schools/hospitals (for free) learn English, who embrace our culture and abide by our rules. Learn the language before even coming. We are the softest touch with regard to immigration hence this country which is creaking being the most popular choice. Being unwilling to learn English and intergrate is something that the immigrants need to be willing to do (just like my parents who came to this country 60 years ago did!).

Of course if you live in the middle of the Cotswolds you are probably thinking -what immgration problems!

maisiejoe123 Fri 25-Jan-13 11:29:11

Just heard that the economy is shrinking even more. When is someone going to make a sensible decision about immigration. Nothing is impossible - we were told when we moved to a new area that the land opposite was Green Belt - it would never be touched! Well guess what. They removed the label (it took the council a number of years) and new houses were built.

Flickstix Fri 25-Jan-13 11:30:25

I've been thinking about this for the last few days and have come to the conclusion that I'm not bothered by mass immigration, as long as people integrate and contribute to society, in fact it can be a good thing but I haven't been personally affected by it so in a way it does make my opinion somewhat invalid.

I think that shouts of racism and bigotry when someone voices their concerns about how immigration is affecting their lives are just wrong, for some people their sense of culture, identity & community is very strong and to feel that they are losing/may lose that can be unsettling.

ConferencePear Fri 25-Jan-13 11:38:15

There is the bigger picture too.
We are already short of energy and so have to pay huge bills to keep warm and we're planning a huge wind farm in the middle of Ireland.
Our food is getting more expensive (and therefore bulked up with 'fillers' like horsemeat) and will this will continue while we build on good land and need to import more and more.
I just don't believe we should go on like this.

TooMuchRain Fri 25-Jan-13 11:52:06

for some people their sense of culture, identity & community is very strong and to feel that they are losing/may lose that can be unsettling.

Surely if it were this strong they wouldn't consider it so fragile that they couldn't maintain it in the presence of other cultures?

badguider Fri 25-Jan-13 11:56:52

There isn't a housing shortage everywhere, some areas are facing declining population - I think it's up to the government to provide the infrastructure that allows businesses to flourish away from the overcrowded cities and therefore making living in areas with surplus housing viable for working families.
The problem is that too high a proportion of our population is squeezed into the SE and westminster politicians despite supposedly representing constituencies across the UK don't seem to be able to see outside of London in terms of business and economics.

Flickstix Fri 25-Jan-13 12:00:17

TooMuchRain - I think it's less to do with other cultures joining their communities (immigration) and more to do with feeling marginalised and overwhelmed (mass immigration). I am forming my opinion on what others have said, not from personal experience.

BridgetBidet Fri 25-Jan-13 12:49:59

I'm really wondering what is going to happen with the Romanians/Bulgarians. It was terrible for my family when the Poles arrived as my husband works in construction and his wages were just decimated overnight. And he was not in a well paid job, it wasn't just plumbers pulling in £80,000 a year who were effected, people earning very modest wages lost them as if you are jobbing your wage changes from job to job so your wage is not static from month to month. Jobs which used to be well paid because they were dirty and unpleasant such as cement fixing suddenly became minimum wage because Poles would come in and do them for that. People say 'Oh the Brit's won't do these nasty jobs' but they DID, they just won't do them for poverty wages.

However there are hardly any Poles or Slovaks left on sites in the north. They have been undercut by crooked agencies who employ illegal Indians for even less than minimum wage so I'm not convinced that it will effect us when the Roma and Bulgarians come because I don't think they will be able to undercut the Indians.

The conditions the Indians live in are awful, they live in dirty flophouses, outhouses and garages which cost about a fiver a day without proper beds or in shared beds where they sleep in shifts. They travel to work in overcrowded vans doing 6 or even 8 hour round journeys with just time to to sleep for a few hours between travel and work, they have no family life and are thin because they don't have enough food but I'm sure you will get people saying that poor Brits should readjust their expectations and work for the same or else they're lazy disregarding the terrible conditions these people have to live in.

It's disgusting people have to live like this in the 21st century in a supposedly developed country.

Mosman Fri 25-Jan-13 13:25:35

And as for the Australian system well maybe you need to look at the way the indigenous people are treated before looking at Australia as an example and the backward attitudes towards racism

50 years ago maybe, these days the government bends over backwards to support, fund and attempt to educate. There are TV ad's about not drinking yourself into a stupor, not to drink in pregnancy etc. If you applied for a job qualified or not as an indigenous person you would get it and then the employer has to think about how to train you or to just give you the money and get somebody else to actually do the job - why more of them don't apply to be CEO's I don't know they'd be onto a winner - anyway as an employer you just wouldn't tell them they hadn't got the job no matter what. And then you wouldn't dare fire them.

expatinscotland Fri 25-Jan-13 13:29:02

Good post, Bridget.

Tailtwister Fri 25-Jan-13 13:44:23

The pressure on essential services and housing does worry me. We are a pretty small country and the economic climate is crippling atm. I also worry about the exploitation of immigrant workers. I know someone who renovates flats and he drives to somewhere where he knows people will be waiting for work (a street corner as far as I can work out), collects them in a van and pays cash in hand.

There are many who work in jobs that could be outsourced. No amount to reduction in immigration can protect my job. I have to compete with people working in India, for example. In fact my company has a lot of employees in India. It is a US company so does it mean I stole someone's job in the US? It's just how globalisation works.

ArtfulAardvark Fri 25-Jan-13 13:48:31

I think flip flop just gave us an example of how larger employers are shunning UK staff - is this legal?

I do think some blame MUST be taken by the larger employers who are pretty much EXPLOITING immigrant employees by paying lower wages.

As was pointed out on Question Time last week - crops DID NOT rot in the fields before we had access to this cheap labour - im guessing a higher wage had to be paid for the work though.

Am wondering if some blame needs to be landed at the feet of the larger supermarkets who insist on paying rock bottom prices for these crops too?

I DONT think we can keep this open door policy, if someone has a skill and something to offer then GREAT but we dont NEED more unskilled labour, lets encourage people off of benefit an into work. It needs to be made more profitable to work than to be on benefit.

Mosman Fri 25-Jan-13 13:55:51

It's always been profitable to go to work for able bodied men and women, single parents aside and even then it's profitable in the long term.
What we mean is it has to become uncomfortable not to work.

BridgetBidet Fri 25-Jan-13 14:05:23

It's not profitable for a lot of people to go to work Mosman, many times over the past few years my family would have been better off on full benefits e.g. getting our rent and council tax paid along with money in our hands.

Mosman Fri 25-Jan-13 14:14:54

As a couple raising children you would have been better off on benefits than working ?

AbbyCat Fri 25-Jan-13 14:26:32

Ridiculously indiscriminate government caps on immigration is one reason the nhs is falling apart. The foreign doctors who are here either got in prior to reforms to the highly skilled migrant program or are eu immigrants. Speaking from personal experience, the quality of foreign trained doctors working in the nhs has dropped dramatically over the past few years, and some specialities (such as maternity) have an acute shortage and will desperately employ anyone they can. It's sad but the nhs is crumbling as a result and there's nothing we can do! Britain is no longer a place to come to for quality medical training. As a dr trained in the uk, I frankly didn't trust my colleagues with my pregnancy and chose to have private care during both my pregnancies. I feel sorry for women who have no choice but to use the nhs- it is like throwing a dice to know how good your dr will be (and you may never realize how crap they were anyway). It's no wonder so many women have traumatic birth experiences. Who wants a different person (with varying bedside manner and expwrience) looking after them every few hours in labour???!

BridgetBidet Fri 25-Jan-13 14:28:47

Yes. After we have paid, rent, council tax, childcare, and the running costs of the car my husband must have for his work there have been many times when we would have been better off on benefits because there is so little left after our bills are paid. If you just shave out of the bit where you get help from the government you're in a very bad position. We earn about £32,000 year between us so only get a very small amount of tax credits, like £20 a month. £7,000 of that is childcare, £8,000 is housing and £1,000 is council tax and the car costs £1500 a year to run plus around £2500 in petrol plus my travel is £1,000 a year. Take away these costs and we have left £9000 a year left or £4,500 each per working adult.

That works out at around £85.00 a week each. Jobseekers is £71.00 a week and on top of that we would get more tax credits because we have children, so we just around break even to what we would get for benefits, possibly slightly less and we work 73 hours a week between us for that.

And this is ignoring the fact that there are weeks like the last few when it's been snowing when we get very little or nothing at all because sites are closed because of the snow.

alemci Fri 25-Jan-13 14:30:36

I don't live that far from Slough either Maisie and I understand what you are saying. Why can't the police deal with the situation. If they are stealing then it is a crime. Must be really intimidating.

Bridget did your husband manage to stay afloat?

ComposHat Fri 25-Jan-13 14:31:21

There's a lot of bullshit bandied around in the Daily Mail and other places about the level of benefits new migrants get.

As far as I can work out it doesn't account to much more than healthcare and school education. (which is what any decent civilised society should do) The notion of people getting off the plane and being handed the keys to council houses is nothing but lies.

Another crucial difference is that Poland joined the EU during the economic boom and there were realistic work prospects for tradespeople and in the service sectors, given the current economic situation I can't see the pull factors being as powerful.

Almost all of the Polish people I know have integrated really well, put most native speakers English to shame are hard workers, mix well. Far better than say, the British expats in the Costas who tend to mix exclusively with fellow little Englanders and don't speak a word of Spanish.

Mosman Fri 25-Jan-13 14:35:38

Well I still think even breaking even, if you are able bodied you should be out there doing your bit. Is the 0 tax before £10,000 still going a head ? That should make work profitable for low income earners assuming it is.

ComposHat Fri 25-Jan-13 14:35:57

*It's always been profitable to go to work for able bodied men and women, single parents aside and even then it's profitable in the long term.
What we mean is it has to become uncomfortable not to work.*

Or alternatively work should be rewarded properly. It is a scandal that people are paid such rotten wages by employers that they have to be topped up by the public purse.

BridgetBidet Fri 25-Jan-13 14:37:16

Incidentally Mosman, do you realise that according to several studies the children most likely to be in poverty are those who have one parent working? NOT those who's parents are on benefits.

61% of children in poverty have a working parent?

Children are now more likely to be in poverty if their parents work than claim benefits.

BridgetBidet Fri 25-Jan-13 14:43:17

Mosman, I don't disagree with that, which you might have worked out from the fact that my family do work even though it's not profitable. But you claimed it WAS profitable.

alemci Fri 25-Jan-13 14:43:55

Compo my uncle lives in Spain and speaks perfect Spanish. He has bought a small house there in his retirement. He lives in a Spanish area and has a Spanish partner. He has definitely integrated. My brother lives iand works in China and has learnt Catonese. His wife is Chinese.

I heard a story once from my hairdresser about ten years' ago (maybe it was a lie or a chinese whisper) about her friend with 2 young children who was desperate for a social house and was allocated one. About to move in but was told that it was no longer available as it had been allocated to a family who were coming in on a plane.

Also another friend of my mums who worked in the NHS was told to prioritise immigrants in hospital appointments etc. She was high up and tried to be fair to everyone which is the way it should be.

I agree the Poles are very hard working. Unfortunately we have allowed alot of other people to come here who are not over the years who are a financial drain.

Mosman Fri 25-Jan-13 14:45:49

I'm surprised at your calculations but I guess there are so many variables, if you could just jump on a bus to work and not need a car or petrol it might be a whole different story.

ComposHat Fri 25-Jan-13 14:51:44

Sorry I should have said, some English people on the Costas. My Uncle who I had this in mind when I was writing this, is one of the Daily Mail reading little Englanders who has spent 20 odd years living in what is essentially a warm Blackpool, surrounded by other people of a similar ilk and I doubt he has had a proper conversation with a Spanish person in all that time. He certainly can't speak Spanish and sees no need to learn. Idiot that he is.

I heard a story once from my hairdresser about ten years' ago (maybe it was a lie or a chinese whisper) about her friend with 2 young children who was desperate for a social house and was allocated one. About to move in but was told that it was no longer available as it had been allocated to a family who were coming in on a plane

Almost certainly false.

alemci Fri 25-Jan-13 14:54:51

Yes Spanish is an easy language as well so very feeble. I think you should learn the lingo if you go to live somewhere and integrate. I don't think that would be my uncle's scene. My uncle lives in a Spanish area and was very well travelled before then. Went to places like South America in the 70's which was more unusual.

stickygingerbread Fri 25-Jan-13 14:59:09

You can have a generous welfare state, or you can have open borders.

Mixing the two is a recipe for big problems.

ComposHat Fri 25-Jan-13 15:00:35

Yes I agree. The galling thing is that he spends his time on his visits pontificating about how Britain is going to the dogs (no doubt fuelled by his two day old Daily Mail) about how the 'pakis' don't integrate, when he is part of an incredibly insular and far more isolationist community in another country himself. He is indeed a prick of the highest order.

PessaryPam Fri 25-Jan-13 15:01:44

sticky, very true.

Mosman I have friends who have been trapped in the situation where they are better off curtailing their hours due to the way our UK benefits system works.

ComposHat Fri 25-Jan-13 15:03:11

or Pam how shite wages are in the UK?

PessaryPam Fri 25-Jan-13 15:08:50

Supply and demand. If you can fill the position on shite wages you would be rendered uncompetitive if you did otherwise. I remember reading about the Black Death. After the population was drastically reduced the peasants had a much better time as they were a scarce resource and could command a better wage for their labour. Unfettered immigration from poorer countries will always reduce the living standard of the poorest indigenous workers.

ComposHat Fri 25-Jan-13 15:15:34

Then it is incumbent on the government to regulate to ensure a decent minimum wage is in place for all, to stop the race to the bottom.

Mosman Fri 25-Jan-13 15:18:57

If you raise wages the cost of living just increases, it didn't work in the 70's and it wouldn't work now.

The fact is we have people on this planet looking at how others have it very comfortably for the last 80 years since the last world war and they would like to have that for themselves too (understandably) only the powers that be won't be allowing their living standards to drop to accommodate this so the general publics will have to.

Mosman Fri 25-Jan-13 15:20:32

If we are opening the flood gates and wanting to live to 99 then something has to give or viva revolution

You can't regulate the wage because those on professional jobs are in competition with workers overseas, including china and India. We don't live in a closed economy. Our wages have to come down to match those nations. Hopefully slowly while they raise theirs.

TigerFeet Fri 25-Jan-13 15:24:37

I live in the town that Prof Beard was talking about on QT the other night. I wasn't born and bred here but I've lived here for well over 10 years and I've seen some pretty major changes.

As a daughter of an immigrant family (Irish) myself I didn't have a problem with the influx to start with. It's true that many local people (not all, but a significant proportion) considered the field and factory work that many immigrants take on as either beneath them or not financially viable due to low pay (ie better off staying on benefits). When we first moved to this area many workers were bussed in from other parts of the country as there wasn't enough labour available here.

Over the last five years or so the population of immigrants from Eastern Europe has increased dramatically and the town just can't cope with the population explosion. It's not just that the influx aren't from the UK. There aren't enough school places, GP surgeries are struggling, it's very difficult to find decent rented accommodation.

There are issues caused by the majority of the influx being non UK nationals though, which are mainly issues of language. Many don't speak English at all. Schools are struggling with having a significant proportion of each intake being unable to speak English. I feel dreadfully sorry for the children tbh, it must be scary being thrust into an environment in which no one can understand you when you're only 4 years old. Of course, they learn quickly at that age and by the time they've been at school a couple of years they speak English as well as their English peers.

If you're looking for certain types of work you're at a disadvantage if you don't speak Polish, Russian or another Eastern European language - think retail, receptionist work, anything that faces the public really.

There have been gang masters that won't accept English people in their gangs, I couldn't say for sure why that is but I'd suspect that the less scrupulous gang masters like having a supply of labour that they control as they transport them, house them etc etc. This isn't good for anyone, not least the gang members themselves as they're put up in conditions that many people just wouldn't accept. There are too many adults living in many houses, admittedly some of the problems caused are middle class problems such as too many cars parked outside each house, noise at all times of day and night as people come and go to work in knackered vans.

None of the issues, and there are more than I've mentioned here, are caused by any one individual or family. I would probably do the same if I were a Polish national with no ties. The problem is the sheer weight of numbers which has put a small market town under immense strain.

We're getting to the point now where there are geographical areas which are "Eastern European" and others which are not. Whenever a cheap house comes on the market - and housing here is cheap - it's generally sold to a landlord who can then let out the rooms to single adults at a vastly inflated rate. People trying to get on the property ladder are struggling to compete with that. There are whole streets and estates where virtually every house sold ends up as a buy to let and English people are becoming the minority. There can be a definite lack of integration and this leaves people who have lived on a street all their lives suddenly being put in a position where they're in a minority. They can't chat to their neighbours any more, they have to put up with a lot more noise and mess.

It's really difficult to explain without sounding racist. I really hope I'm not coming over in that way. I've experienced the changes here fist hand and I have to say that I'm struggling to see many positives other than a ready supply of cheap labour - and that isn't very positive is it?

TigerFeet Fri 25-Jan-13 15:31:01

Ooops sorry that was a bit of an essay wasn't it? There's so much more to say. The supermarkets have a huge role to play in our area as most of the food companies round here supply them. They're constantly pushing on price and the companies are forced to use the cheap labour as otherwise they'll go under. There are plenty here which have done exactly that, gone under.

It's a huge and very complex problem.

I'm a pinko lefty liberal by nature, I love the fact that we're free to move around so many countries at will, but there needs to be some kind of control or infrastructure in place to deal with it and that costs money the country doesn't have.

PessaryPam Fri 25-Jan-13 15:31:40

Thank you for your thoughtful and well reasoned post Tiger.

ComposHat Fri 25-Jan-13 15:34:12

including china and India. We don't live in a closed economy. Our wages have to come down to match those nations

What a daft thing to say.

Yeah great idea, let's have 8 year olds working 15 hours a day stitching together football shirts in this country too.

Let's have heavy industries so badly regulated that people routinely die and lose limbs. Workers kicking up a fuss about it Stick them in jail without the fuss or expense of a fair trial.

We can't nor should we aspire to compete with developing nations for mass producing tat or to providing the cheapest of everything. We should be looking to develop well made high quality products and specialising in knowledge or high tec industries.

expatinscotland Fri 25-Jan-13 15:37:27

Good posts, Tiger.

What a daft thing you are saying as well. I'm in software engineering and no one hires 8 year olds to sit in front of computers and design software. But fact is people who are educated are also competing for jobs against foreigners. My friends in finance are facing the same. All I am saying is that we are now competing in a global economy. Simply controlling immigration numbers is not going to save UK jobs.

I mean foreigners living in their own country. In my industry it's mostly India. Company will not think twice firing UK workers and move the jobs to india.

MissYamabuki Fri 25-Jan-13 15:53:07

very surprised at some posts here... always thought that you had to pay NI for at least 2 years in the UK to be entitled to any benefits.
On the other hand, if your fellow Pole is paying the same NI and income tax as you, why shouldn't they get the perks, too? The other side of that are the non-doms - no tax but if you want any services you have to pay. Have no problem with that.
If freedom of circulation within the EU is curtailed the 900,000 Brits living in the Costas and having their hips replaced at no cost to the NHS might have to be repatriated shock
I'm not overly worried at mass migration - I think that people will go where jobs are and where economies are thriving. With uni fees of £9k a year the UK is not looking like the best place to raise a kid on low wages. If uni fees rise with inflation it might work out cheaper to send my 2yo to an American college sad

Flickstix Fri 25-Jan-13 15:54:50

Good post Tiger

Fluffybumblebee Fri 25-Jan-13 16:12:13

It is often easier to blame others (immigrants in this case) than look at what you are doing wrong or where you could improve. Britain is more likely to fail in a globalised economy, and not because of cheap labour or immigration, but mostly because of flaws in the education system and styles of parenting.

While visiting British state schools I have noticed that children are given less homework than their peers in European countries (where children would normally spend 2 to 3 hours a day doing homework).

Another big problem is the way that languages are taught in this country. Children are mostly taught basic phrases that they would need if they went on holiday to France, Spain or Germany, but with that amount of second/third language they would struggle to work in a job where multiple languages are needed (this is a requirement for more and more jobs, as companies open multiple offices around the globe). Today I've seen a mother on MN complaining about her four year old learning too much French at an English school. That, I can not comprehend.

Third big problem lies within teachers' inability to interest children in science, maths, IT, geography and history. Instead of encouraging children to be scientists, IT programmers, doctors, lawyers, dentists, economists, historians, politicians, children are encouraged to be creative and artsy and dream about being in a media business or doing Gaga degrees.

There is also a lack of imposition of a hard working culture to children from a young age. What you call "pushy parenting", we call "parenting". Children not only do lots of homework, compete in olympiads, but often (up to 5 times a week) attend art, music, sport school, where they have to do extra homework, take exams yearly and are expected to give performances and attend competitions. I find that in Britain there is this fear of criticising children (we all probably heard about children getting medals even if thy came last).

alemci Fri 25-Jan-13 16:15:04

don't the Brits in Spain have private healthcare or have to take out insurance. I don't know - genuine question?

Good post Tiger. My grandparents lived in that neck of the woods and my parents used to drive through your town in the 70's as it was on route to A1 London I think?.

Fluffybumblebee Fri 25-Jan-13 16:19:57

alemci, almost always NHS pics up the bill for their treatment.

Sallyingforth Fri 25-Jan-13 16:22:08

I think that people will go where jobs are and where economies are thriving.
I have no problem with that, it's a good thing and something that has brought benefits to the UK for many years.
But looking at the social and economic conditions in the two 'new' countries, it is clear that families will be attracted to the UK even if they are unable/unwilling to find work, simply because the social and medical support here are so much better. They might have to wait months to qualify, but they will still be better for than being destitute at home.
If I was in Romania now and couldn't feed my family, I would be champing at the bit to bring them to Britain.

MissYamabuki Fri 25-Jan-13 16:25:44

alemci - you can get free healthcare within the EU with your little blue healthcard. Last time we were on holiday we had to take DD to A&E, we only had to flash the card and she was seen like everybody else. As said by others I doubt this gets recharged as no record was made of our name or details.
fluffy - Finland comes tops at PISA ratings and they have done away with homework. I must say I agree with that - school work can be done in school and non-school time should be used for other things IMO.

LayMizzRarb Fri 25-Jan-13 16:26:18

If you see a doctor in Spain, you have to pay for your own interpreter. My doctor offers interpreters in a couple of hundred different languages for free. I have a friend who speaks an unusual foreign language and is regularly called in to sit in and translate at appointments. £80 per hour + vat. Minimum call of 2 hours, plus travelling time.

Fluffybumblebee Fri 25-Jan-13 16:36:51

Sally, there are underlying problems of people (especially Roma community) not being able to feed their families. Most of them have no choice but to leave for another countries. Roma community is often used as a scapegoat for all the problems that exist in Romania and other Eastern European countries. There is very little done to help them integrate into the society and they are being openly discriminated by politicians and general public. It is very hard to be of a Roma community and find legal work in Eastern Europe and support your family. Many children live in poverty, pushed to the poorest parts of towns and cities. Children start working at an early age, therefore missing the opportunity of going to school. As they have no choice.

BegoniaBampot Fri 25-Jan-13 16:45:15

Someone asked who had actually been affected by immigration, well I applied for my child to enter the lovely little school very close by for reception. Until a few years ago this would have been no problem, now that school in the past few years has changed to about 80% immigrants. He didn't get a place, not too bothered as we got another good school further away an another village we have to drive to. But, yes I'd say he missed out on first choice school because of the large amount of immigrants who had recently moved to that area. Some areas are very much harder hit by immigration that others, doesn't have to be all doom and gloom, many of the immigrants work hard and just want a better life for their families.

Sallyingforth Fri 25-Jan-13 16:46:14

I couldn't blame anyone in those circumstances for wanting to come here. It is quite understandable.

Flickstix Fri 25-Jan-13 16:48:24

Would just like pop in and to say well done to us all for having an immigration thread that hasn't descended into a bun fight

alemci Fri 25-Jan-13 16:50:16

but then most of the expats have reasonable wealth and have bought their own properties in Spain. They don't expect to be housed for example and they put money into the Spanish economy as do many of the immigrants who come here. Many now struggle financially because of the exchange rate and falling property prices. I doubt if they receive any benefits in Spain.

Also if you went to the EU on holiday you would probably take out travel insurance anyway as well as your blue card. Well I would

They have to pay for translators as LayMizz has stated.

Also I don't think ex pats can just roll up and expect to be treated here on the NHS. I think they get turned away.

slug Fri 25-Jan-13 16:56:09

Well I'm an immigrant. <<outs self>> I'm also a higher rate tax payer and occasional NHS user.

Because, until I speak, I'm indistinguishable from the native population, I sometimes sit at bus stops listening to the conversations about immigrants and how they are destroying the UK and wonder if it would be safe to open my mouth. This has got far, far worse under the coalition government.

maisiejoe123 Fri 25-Jan-13 17:00:56

Not sure anyone has answered my query. Geninue question BTW.

If a Romanian family came over to the UK next year with three children would they have to prove they had somewhere to live and enough money behind them or would they report to the nearest council for emergency accomendation.

MousyMouse Fri 25-Jan-13 17:11:30

no, they would privately rent. possibly just a shithole room in a house/flat share (mould on the walls, questionable gas safety, cash in hand). after a while they have enough deposit together to rent a place on heir own.

but more likely the higher earner of a family would come, share a room safe like mad and send some money home and only when able to rent a place on their own move their family over.

BegoniaBampot Fri 25-Jan-13 17:14:32

Slug, that must be horrible. My friend is from Eastern Europe. She has settled here, had children, she works, does voluntary work and is a model citizen. She got into a argument when some beer guzzling local let their dog off the leash in the park and it went for her young child. When she complained all she got was a mouthful of abuse about how she should fuck off back to her own country. I know which one I'd rather fuck off. On the other hand my hijab wearing Asian British friend has been shouted at, had her scarf pulled off by some Eastern Europeans telling her to go back to her own country. Weird, scary old world out there.

BeanJuice Fri 25-Jan-13 17:19:56

My mum, an immigrant herself, thinks the current levels are a big problem

alemci Fri 25-Jan-13 17:20:35

Just had Shelter charity knock at the door. Definitely a problem with housing here. Sensible to sort out those in need here first rather than letting even more people come who are not well off.

maisiejoe123 Fri 25-Jan-13 17:23:38

So what if they literally had a couple of £100's. Looking at this thread I think the government need to step in here and tighten up the rules. What stops someone with a challenging illness to come here with little means of support.

Having been to Romania a few times - they cannot wait for the boarders to open (and who can blame them!).

The reason I am asking is that a friend recently went to the local hospital and was turned away as they were too busy and had closed their doors. She had a car and went to the next nearest hospital. Having spent some time in my local hospital when my DS was ill last year I saw just the pressure the NHS is under. The person in front of me at Reception could speak very little English. He then started kicking off and the A&E reception cleared in a flash. Security were called and he was carted off but A&E's are literally like a war zone now...

LayMizzRarb Fri 25-Jan-13 17:24:18

It is not immigrants who are destroying the UK. it is is politicians with a lack of balls who do nothing to review or restructure immigration criteria.
If anyone claims asylum in this country then we should consider every case fairly. While the case is being investigated, the applicants should be detained within a secure area (like they do in Australia). Too many people are being allowed leave to remain in the uk, and with the (non) speedy application procedure, they can eventually claim residency because they have been in the country for so many years, have settled and had children.

maisiejoe123 Fri 25-Jan-13 17:30:13

Lay I agree with you. A relative was an Immgration Officer at Heathrow many years ago and he told us that whilst Immgration did what they could to stop illegals what tended to happen was the person trying to get in (often a relative - typically male) used whoever they knew here to meet them when their plane landed. Immgration would stop them, the person here would call their local MP/councillor etc and they would be given temp leave until invesigations were complete.

Because the Immgration office was so behind these people just disappeared.....

That was 15 years ago. God knows what it is like now.

LayMizzRarb Fri 25-Jan-13 17:33:42

To answer your question maisiejoe, the local authority would find accomodation for the family from Romania. Added to which, once the benefits have been set up, including child allowance they will be paid into the bank account of the parent, and the child benefit continues to be paid regardless of whether the child resides in the uk. There are no cross checks done to see that they are attending school etc in this country.

Flickstix Fri 25-Jan-13 17:37:04

That's just really scary....

LayMizzRarb Fri 25-Jan-13 17:41:25

In a way I admire the people who come here and take full advantage of our healthcare and benefits system.
If you came from a very poor background, and you knew that your child was sick and your country's health system was woefully inadequate, would you uproot your family, go to another country and claim asylum so your child could have care? I would.
And given the same background, and amount of child benefit given in the Uk would mean your child having a warm coat, hot food, an education. If all you had to do to receive a weekly amount paid into your bank account was to come to the uk with the kids and live for a while. Would you do it? I would.

maisiejoe123 Fri 25-Jan-13 17:47:24

Thanks Lay, so all these people who say immgration is fine. What would you feel if you were at the top of the list and then found your potential property had been given to someone who had just landed...

Blimey - this is scary stuff. Dont want to reveal too much but the two countries shortly to join the EU will cause chaos. I did some work around the orphanages and let me tell you - it will live with me forever. Money that was been given to help us never got there. It was stolen along the way and colleagues would say it was because it was the culture. They didnt have much either so felt there was no issue in not passing everything on.

FreudiansSlipper Fri 25-Jan-13 17:47:58

Is that right Mosman

I worked in sydney in a many offices mainly finance in (year 2000 that is 12 years ago not 50) I never once worked with an indigenous person the only ones i did see were cleaners. I returned to Australia last year again saw very little change and the attitude towards indigenous people that many have had not changed either. what is law and what actually happens and how figures can be twisted.

Australia is renowned for having backward attitudes towards immigrants which is joke considering the history of the country

Midlifecrisisarefun Fri 25-Jan-13 18:14:54

I once had an argument discussion with SIL who thinks anyone on benefits is a scrounger who doesn't want to work and buys into the DM version of that issue but also believes we need lots of immigrants because of it.
Immigration has always happened, populations shift and it adds to the rich culture here but there has to be a saturation level.
I suggested that instead of wholesale importing cheap labour we should be dealing with
WHY benefits can and does mean more income,
WHY large companies with millions( thinking supermarkets, multinationals etc) in profit every year are allowed to pay staff such a low wage top ups are needed,
WHY the same system prevents those who can and want to do overtime/improve their skills and take small rises lose money and it causes havoc with top up benefits etc.
WHY we have skill shortages and so on.
Its useless to say that people should have pride, pride is no use to pay bills! It is the system that needs to be dealt with. Individuals will do whats best for themselves and their families.
WHY companies prefer to use foreign workers
Why are asylum claims dealt with here? I'm not aware that any immediate neighbouring countries are a danger therefore we are not the first safe country for anyone. Therefore unless it is agreed with the first safe country that they can come here they are economic migrants. We should continue to do so for those in genuine peril but assessed for suitability.
Anyone coming here from anywhere should have means to pay for housing/health/education. Insurance schemes should be used. Companies wanting staff will work it into their pay packages. Low pay workers should secure employment through labour centres in their own countries and it should be verified that the work cannot be fulfilled with local labour.
It is not racist or zenophobic to say that mass immigration is not welcomed by many.It effects all that live here. Could we sustain the population if there was war/disaster etc?
If we cannot provide housing/jobs for the existing poluation how can we absorb more?
Any immigrant found guilty of crime should be immediately deported,regardless of status we have enough of our own criminals to fill prisons.
IE I will get to the point.... It needs to be managed to maximise the benefits to the country.
<gets down off soapbox>

MrsDeVere Fri 25-Jan-13 18:17:51

I work with many families in difficult conditions. I care but I tend not to get upset.
The only time I have been haunted by one of my cases was a Roma family.
I would love to tell the story because I think it would set out exactly what utterly shite lives many of the women have.
But I can't.

layMiz I think you should clarify that 'finding accommodation' does NOT mean 'give a council house. I am sure you do not wish to give that impression but a lot of people will read it as such.

LayMizzRarb Fri 25-Jan-13 18:28:32

Council home/accomodation - the local authority foots the bill for either.It would almost be better if the families were given a council home. It would cost a damn sight less than the amount of money that local authorities are paying to private hostels and hotels, but that's a different matter all together.
No I don't think it's fair that people who have been working in the country for years are pushed further and further down the housing list.
I fear for the state of this country in the next 5-10 years. I'm extremely lucky, we applied for a visa to migrate to Australia a few years ago, and after we lived there for a period to validate it, we can now go back with definite leave to remain. But we will still be unable to claim any benefits on landing there. Quite rightly so.

NumericalMum Fri 25-Jan-13 18:32:00

A few days ago some teachers were complaining about how they are losing their wonderful pensions and would have to work til 102. That is why you need immigrants to work here and support the elderly.

Harriet35 Fri 25-Jan-13 18:35:41

NumericalMum that is utter balls. The vast majority of immigrants do not make a net contribution. We have always had immigration of highly skilled workers, that is what we need, not mass immigration of unskilled and semi-skilled people.

cory Fri 25-Jan-13 18:35:58

slug Fri 25-Jan-13 16:56:09
"Well I'm an immigrant. <<outs self>> I'm also a higher rate tax payer and occasional NHS user.

Because, until I speak, I'm indistinguishable from the native population, I sometimes sit at bus stops listening to the conversations about immigrants and how they are destroying the UK and wonder if it would be safe to open my mouth. This has got far, far worse under the coalition government. "

Same here. Except I can sometimes get away with it even when speaking.

When dh and I were getting married we did debate the possibility of settling in my country instead. Then it would have been he who was the mythical benefit scrounger and had people grudge him health treatment etc etc.

A few years ago I was offered a job in a third EU- so we could both have been scroungers. grin

cory Fri 25-Jan-13 18:36:54

iet35 Fri 25-Jan-13 18:35:41
"NumericalMum that is utter balls. The vast majority of immigrants do not make a net contribution. "

Could we perhaps have some figures to prove this?

alemci Fri 25-Jan-13 18:42:26

no we need our own population to work rather than being unemployed and some of the immigrants who are already here who don't seem to ever be made to get a job and just keep on having babies.

lljkk Fri 25-Jan-13 18:53:41

What would you feel if you were at the top of the list and then found your potential property had been given to someone who had just landed...

I don't understand this whole "list" thing, anyway, isn't it about having a different property you prefer, not actually keeping folk off the streets? What happens currently, does the person who was top of the list become homeless for a long spell as a result, thrown out on the streets? Why don't I see their pictures on front page of the paper every day? I think there's another outcome.

Where I come from the vulnerable end up in private rented accommodation or shelters until rented accommodation can be found. This idea of "lists" is still very foreign to me.

Flickstix Fri 25-Jan-13 18:55:30

Why are the government not too bothered about this though, do they know something we don't?

MrsDeVere Fri 25-Jan-13 18:56:36

if the Romas are put in temp private accommodation they are not pushing anyone down the housing list.
They are being paid HB by the government not the LA. Local Authorities do not pay housing benefits.

This only applies to families with children. If you are a childless adult you are left to it, just like anyone else.

Even if your child has just died.

MrsDeVere Fri 25-Jan-13 18:58:32

There are no lists.
Social housing is allocated on a bidding system. You have a certain amount of points according to need.

Most people I know who do not have extra need (eg disability) much prefer to live in private rented. That way you get to chose where you live and you don't have to live on an estate.

Flickstix Fri 25-Jan-13 18:59:03

You don't go on a 'list' now, you have to bid on council accommodation and it goes to the person with the highest need (most DC etc).

You will get put up in emergency B&B accommodation until you find somewhere, but I think most people get housing benefit now, so you chose a private rental and then get your rent paid.

This is how it works for British people so I imagine it's the same for EU immigrants, someone correct me if I'm wrong!

Fluffybumblebee Fri 25-Jan-13 18:59:50

"no we need our own population to work rather than being unemployed"

do you think people should be forced to work (wherever they came from)? And what about able-bodied Britons who have never payed into the system, should they get benefits?

Flickstix Fri 25-Jan-13 18:59:51

x post mrsdevere

MrsDeVere Fri 25-Jan-13 19:00:04

I would like figures on all the immigrants who have never worked and keep having babies.

cory Fri 25-Jan-13 19:01:48

MrsDeVere Fri 25-Jan-13 19:00:04
"I would like figures on all the immigrants who have never worked and keep having babies. "

They're the ones that keep taking all our jobs, innit?

Mosman, don't start me on Australia. Their treatment of kiwi migrants is disgraceful. I can't imagine they are any better to aboriginals.

lainiekazan Fri 25-Jan-13 19:07:16

so you chose a private rental and then get your rent paid

And that is how you get the stories of people landing in Kensington town houses and the council picking up the rent. It's appalling when you think that your whole year's council tax is possibly being swallowed up in one person's weekly rent (or in the case of central London - one day's rent!).

The people making out like bandits out of immigration are landlords.

I would say to the people who want open borders - ok, you have a Roma family share your house.

Flickstix Fri 25-Jan-13 19:17:25

They will pay the average for the area, for the size of your family. Although I think it has been reduced slightly over the last month, if you are short you can still apply for a discretionary payment to top it up.

alemci Fri 25-Jan-13 19:28:34

I don't think I could give you figures as lets face it who would publish it. Probably would be burnt at the stake as a heretic as you would probably like to do to me.

I have worked in education and so has my mother. My friend worked in a local secondary school and even the kids of immigrants commented that they thought their parents should work and were very lucky to be given everything for free. some of them had lived in other European countries for a while and then come here next when the first country no longer gave them any free accommodation or they couldn't secure work and had to move on.

Another lady I knew worked in a health clinic for people with babies (can't think of terminology . Her and her husband moved away out of area because they were so sick of new arrivals getting free baby milk etc and their perceived grasping attitude. Always had the latest mobile phones etc. (sorry I know it sounds like the flat screen analogy). She couldn't understand why they couldn't buy the mikl themselves. Also they felt that the area was changing for the worst.

Also what about all the people being exploited living in sheds in certain areas and then the landlords pretending no one lives there and not paying any council tax. Too much immmigration is causing this problem as well.

also the HB for the Roma still comes out the treasury. Taxpayers are still paying for them.

People talk about this subject constantly because most people who may have been tolerant say 20 years' ago (I was) have seen too much change in their local areas and feel invaded.

Yes I think able Britains should work hence we don't need any more people coming.

thanksamillion Fri 25-Jan-13 19:33:06

Umm, I live in a neighbouring country to Romania and speak Romanian and read the press there. I have to say that firstly I am not seeing a whole lot about people desperately wanting to come to the UK. There may be some, yes, but most people who wanted to have already done so.

Secondly other countries tend to be more popular eg Italy where the language and culture are much more similar.

Thirdly, although there is still a huge amount of poverty in Romania, there is also an incredible amount of change happening, living conditions are improving and there isn't so much desire to leave.

Also Poland is technically Central Europe not Eastern Europe grin

Bakingnovice Fri 25-Jan-13 19:58:38

Slug you touched on an important point. I personally have witnessed white immigrants treated much better than none white ones. In fact I have seen recent white immigrants racially abuse assigns who are third and fourth generation. To me, the colour of the immigrant is irrelevant. I know the Romanians are darker skinned and so maybe that's why people are more wary of them settling here.

It's the calibre of immigrant that is important. Someone who is coming for the right reasons, to better their lives, to work, to contribute to society, to install our values of tolerance and diligence in their kids. It seems that wealthier poles/Romanians/Slovaks etc are tending to stay on in their countries and it is the less wealthy citizens attracted by immigration. Certainly I myself have never met a wealthy new immigrant as yet. The problem is that if most of the immigrants are lower or working class, with little education, and dependants then how can we expect them to contribute to society? All it does is create an underclass living below our own underclass. Not good for anyone.

Also, another good point was the one made relating to neighbours. My parents too feel alienated because their elderly neighbours dies, landlord bought the house and it now houses 3 families of European immigrants. They miss the banter they had, the ability to chat freely. They have tried to get to know their new neighbours but language is a problem. I am typing on my phone but hope I've been able to convey what I wanted to say.

MrsDeVere Fri 25-Jan-13 20:37:45

Do you believe everything the DM tells you?

Seriously do facts not bother you?
There is a limit to HB. There is a limit to the amount of rooms you can have.
If there were hundreds of people living in mansions the odd story that comes up would hardly be worthy of a double page spread would it?

alemci sorry but that sort of comment just makes you sound like Nick Griffin whenever he is challenged about the lies he spreads. 'its all a leftie cover up' 'they won't tell you the truth'.

Birth stats are published regularly are they not?
Unemployment figures are also pretty freely available.
Etc etc etc.

You cannot base your ideology on things you think might be happening because some bloke whose sister's boyfriend works for the housing tells you.

Well you can, but don't expect to be taken seriously.

Flickstix Fri 25-Jan-13 20:43:30

Theoretically you could live in a mansion on housing benefit if you had enough children. You are allowed two children to a room, but boys & girls over the age of 7 need their own room. If you lived in central London and had 8 children you could have a house with a minimum of 6 bedrooms at the average local rental price.

MrsDeVere Fri 25-Jan-13 20:59:15

Not with the benefits cap you couldn't.

Flickstix Fri 25-Jan-13 21:03:25

But surely they would have to provide you with a house big enough & with enough bedrooms, and if there was no council accommodation available then they would pay for you to rent privately? Sorry this is a bit off topic.

alemci Fri 25-Jan-13 21:12:18

I have heard the same thing from so many different sources over the years' so not everyone is lying or anyone at all. People are muttering in corners because they are so fed up with the situation. As I said in the area where i live there are alot of immigrants already so I do not think we should allow anymore people to come here . I don't think much to Nick Griffin but I do think politicians should listen to its electorate. I did mention Magaret? Hodge earlier in the thread and the situation in Barking and Dagenham.

Do you think the story in the Mail about the lady from Afghanistan in a big house in Ealing was a lie, also Abu Hanza's wife was recently rehoused in a leafy suburb in North London even though she doesn't seem to have a job. Is the press always lying? or am I just hallucinating when I go to the local town and I feel like I am in another country.

Portofino Fri 25-Jan-13 21:32:00

You don't even need immigration to be honest. Offshore companies are growing and growing. I work for a tech company and MUCH software development is done offshore because it is much cheaper. People can do the job from afar without accessing our schools and healthcare. I find that MORE scary really. They have a workbase of HIGHLY QUALIFIED people who can do their job remotely.

Portofino Fri 25-Jan-13 21:33:18

So EU companies don't even need to employ EU people to do work anymore.

MrsDeVere Fri 25-Jan-13 21:33:45

Flick the benefits cap is set at 24k.
How much do you think it cost to rent an 8 bedroom mansion in London?

MrsDeVere Fri 25-Jan-13 21:36:08

Well like I said,
If it was common you would hardly make a two page spread in the DM would it?

You have two extreme examples.

I cannot comment on your hallucinations. you feel like you are in another country. That is subjective. It is not a fact.

I have not seen any facts in any of your posts.

Portofino Fri 25-Jan-13 21:36:14

And their range of skills improves, they pay no EU taxes, the money flows out and pays for investments and training so they become more skilled, and the EU gets nothing back.

Flickstix Fri 25-Jan-13 21:49:45

I thought it was 26k?

MrsDeVere Fri 25-Jan-13 21:56:26

Sorry typo.
But that raises the question...if you knew it was 26k how do you imagine people would live in 8 bedroomed mansions in London?
Housing benefit is included in the cap.

WidowWadman Fri 25-Jan-13 21:56:40

Must have done something wrong. Nobody gave me a free council house and lots of benefits when I arrived here.

MrsDeVere Fri 25-Jan-13 22:00:27

In my part of London (which is not a sought after area) it THREE beds start at £1,350 pcm.

Flickstix Fri 25-Jan-13 22:01:03

I didn't, I just looked it up and it said £500 per week, which x 52 is 26k, I wasn't sure whether they had another complicated way of working it out though which would bring it down to 24k.

sunshine401 Fri 25-Jan-13 22:08:11

Don't have the space and Britons should be given priority
hmm Yes as We have rights and all that it was not just pure luck we were bought up here was it? Its a piece of land on the earth it is not a birth right. People in horrible deprived countries have every right to come here and have a better life for themselves and their families. Population grows all the time shall we start telling people to stop having children ? As there are already thousands of children here who need the schools , food and homes and they are the priority as all ready living "Brits". Great stuff!

MrsDeVere Fri 25-Jan-13 22:11:06

Cheapest 8 bedroom on Zoopla = 30k per year
8 bedroom in a 'luxury' area like Wimbledon = 48k

mumzy Fri 25-Jan-13 22:29:46

For governments to allow more immigration without the additional housing, schools, health service etc is totally irresponsible and just causes tensions and resentment as the indigenious population and immigrants compete for ever scarce resources. I work for the NHS and over the past 10 years my casesload has increased by 30% and I'm just expected to provide the same service without additional staff. The result is patients are seen for an average of 10 minutes rather than the usual 15 and our reviews are now annually rather than every 9 months. I can see the service isn't as thorough or are we providing our patients with the best care but without additional funding its the best we can do.

lulabelleg Fri 25-Jan-13 22:39:44

Flickstix Fri 25-Jan-13 20:43:30

Theoretically you could live in a mansion on housing benefit if you had enough children. You are allowed two children to a room, but boys & girls over the age of 7 need their own room. If you lived in central London and had 8 children you could have a house with a minimum of 6 bedrooms at the average local rental price.

That is wrong. The maximum amount payable for any housing benefit claim is for a 4 bed house (subject to LHA rate for that area) since at least 2010, before that it was 5 bedrooms. If people have more children than that they still only get 4 bed rate. They may be able to find an 8 bedroom mansion for a 4 bed rate but I think thats pretty unlikely. This will also be subject to benefit cap whch will make it pretty much impossible for any larger non working family to receive full HB for a 4 bed house anywhere.

alemci Fri 25-Jan-13 22:40:20

Mrs De Vere it is subjective, I agree. Opinion as fact maybe but what about Margaret Hodge was that story not true.

I know it is in the mail but is it necessarily a lie. Wouldn't the mail be sued for liable otherwise.

alemci Fri 25-Jan-13 22:49:58

I also found this in regard to house in Ealing I mentioned earlier. This one is opinion but it links to other stories.

williaminajetfighter Fri 25-Jan-13 22:58:11

Agree this needs better understanding and some of the people who claim to be 'citizens of the world' and fine with mass immigration need to get their head out of the sand! Sounds like the kind of thing i'd say when I was 24 and listening to billy Bragg.

Immigration has always existed but immigration of this volume has not. Mass immigration clearly has a practical effect on schools, houses and communities as evidenced by people's experience. Try being a teacher when the majority of your class do not speak English as a first language.

We need to divorce the ideological from the practical. Immigration ideologically all good but on a practical level many issues arise.

I have 2 main issues:
1. Britain is packed. Really. The south east is the most dense place in Europe after Malta. We just cannot cram more in and many do want to go to the south east.

2. Culturally I think it's worrying that we no longer share background, culture or language with our neighbors and that our commonalities are likely to be a belief in the market economy and desire for a democratic system. That's all well and good but is it enough? Flame away but I think there are real issues about the culture we create and our future mono culture.

Ps I am an immigrant 15 years here from Canada. Wasn't allowed benefits till I became a citizen. Was told at least 3times that I was taking jobs away from locals.

MrsDeVere Fri 25-Jan-13 23:02:40

Do you understand the posts I and lulu have written?

As for the 'wouldn't the mail be sued' are being disingenuous. No-one is that daft.

The whole 'silly little me' spiel is wearing thin tbh.

williaminajetfighter Fri 25-Jan-13 23:03:53

Also we need more stats on here so we can talk in real terms.

MousyMouse Fri 25-Jan-13 23:14:24

tbh I'm more worried about mass immigration from the east outside the eu and africa. really sad and scary things going on right now.

Bakingnovice Fri 25-Jan-13 23:25:06

Mousy are you saying white immigrants are ok but any non white ones are not??! Dear god.

MousyMouse Fri 25-Jan-13 23:34:11

no, not saying that at all.
eastern eu will (most probably) not be a mass immigration but the boats full of african refugees is a huge problem already for italy/malta/cyprus/spain and will spread through all of europe including the uk.

Flickstix Fri 25-Jan-13 23:37:29

I stand corrected re the housing benefit.

Bakingnovice Fri 25-Jan-13 23:51:56

Mousy - eastern Europe will not bring mass immigration? You need to go read the stats. Where have you been the last few years?! And it does sound from your post that you are irrationally terrified of 'boats full of africans'. Just to let you know, technology has now advanced. We now have planes.

alemci Sat 26-Jan-13 09:23:54

but Mrs de Vere you still haven't commented on my links. Are they untrue. I know the housing benefit criteria has changed but this was before then. How did the people in the story manage to get such large properties and in such nice areas. Are they actors and have the mail rented the house from someone else for an hour to make up a story.

I thought the Blog by Dave Farmer was a sensible point of view.

what is silly about what I am posting or asking. I am not trying to do a silly little me act. I will have a look at the other figures as well.

What Mousey is saying may be true as this already happens. Often some of the refugees/ecomomic migrants have already lived in places such as Norway or Holland first. My mum asked the kids why they had come to Brtitain and they said the parents wanted to learn English.

Why can't we sort out who is already here first and make sure there are enough jobs and housing. Is it good to keep on building on fields and concreting over them. What about wildlife and protected species.

Where my in laws live in Oxfordshire there has been mass house building on the outskirts of the town. One farmer had his farm purchased without choice by the government even though it was economically viable and then more shoe box houses built on it. We will have to import more food which will become more expensive and people can be controlled by food and shortages.

I agree with what williamina is saying.

alemci Sat 26-Jan-13 09:30:00

I looked at the figures you supplied.

What do you think about the migration watch site.


MrsDeVere Sat 26-Jan-13 09:53:12

Your links are two years old.
What is the point of commenting on irrelevant links confused

Migration watch are not a reliable source of unbiased information on immigration.

You clearly have an agenda but refuse to be open about it. All that googling and that is all you came up with? Two old article proving your point? Did you have a poverty filter on your laptop?

MrsDeVere Sat 26-Jan-13 09:56:40

Jesus Christ! That website has scrolling news. Nice little stories about terrorists being charged etc.

Yes, they seem very balanced hmm

williaminajetfighter Sat 26-Jan-13 10:16:49

Mrs Devere. You need to chill out. Seriously.

I was using my iPhone and trying to quickly find some useful links. While I was in bed. Plus it's quite difficult to find some good charts that show immigration over long periods of time - a lot of the ONS stats are quarterly or written in text not charted. I am familiar with migration watch but I wasn't linking to them because I have some kind of bone to pick.... I literally found the best stats I could in the quickest time. While half asleep.

Not everyone on MN has an agenda. In Glasgow we call this 'being chippy'.

williaminajetfighter Sat 26-Jan-13 10:19:39

But the reason I added stats is virtually everyone on the thread was talking anecdotally and I thought it was helpful, if we were going to talk about mass immigration or even increases in immigration, that we might want to refer to some figures!!

MrsDeVere Sat 26-Jan-13 10:24:42

In London we call this 'I wasn't talking to you love'

Unless you are also alemci?


alemci Sat 26-Jan-13 10:31:00

ok Mrs de vere but let's not take the lords name in vain. Nothing to do with him.

Yes the posts are 2 years old but surely they are of relevant because it has been an ongoing problem for years' especially since NL came into power in 1997.

I am using a pc not a laptop. My dd's one drives me mental. I didn't see the terrorist thing but so what if it is on there.

Of course Migrationwatch has a bias. It is trying to protect the borders and our way of life. Why is that so bad. Why do we need to have so many people here?

I haven't got any agenda. I think the subject we are discussing is of major concern. I live in the overcrowded Greater London and I don't think we need any more people here especially unskilled impoverished ones. We have been tolerant and generous over the years' but we are in a recession and have a huge deficit.

watched question time and the MP Ben Bradshaw or Ming (Menzies) said our biggest spend was on welfare.

cory Sat 26-Jan-13 10:43:05

Main reason that I am an immigrant is that I didn't want dh exposed to this kind of crap in my home country. Being English, he looks dark and foreign and struggles with pronouncing other languages, so would no doubt have drawn down exactly the kind of comments we see on this thread. And exactly like the British, the Swedes are convinced they are the only ones in the world running a superior welfare system that is being exploited by feckless immigrants.

Could someone please indicate a small uninhabited rock in the North Sea where dh and I can go and live without being in anybody's way?

williaminajetfighter Sat 26-Jan-13 11:07:00

Mrs devere, you're still being unnecessarily chippy.

MrsDeVere Sat 26-Jan-13 11:07:52

Alemci. Really?
What I do with the Lord's name is my business. I politely suggest you keep out of it smile

This thread is based on what different people think might happen.
No one knows and based on what people have been thinking is going to happen for centuries and never has....I cant muster up any grave concern.

Why do you keep connecting immigrants with welfare?
Do you think that all immigrants are on benefits?

Oh and williamina that was a lame joke by the way rather than an actual accusation. I just forgot my grin at the end.

I have always found that people use 'chip on your shoulder' thing when they are running out of arguments. Its a phrase I dislike because it is one that is historically used mainly to shut down arguments from the working classes, black people etc.

Its rarely applied to the MCs for example.

Mimishimi Sat 26-Jan-13 11:25:20

But Mrs Devere, don't you know? If immigrants are working, they are stealing our jobs. If they have good educations, it's because of the terrible social conditions in their country of origin that have allowed their family to prosper. If they are poor and uneducated but still working, they are only employed because they are cheap, not because they have any skills that a British person does not have. If they are not working, they are lazy and scroungers. wink

MrsDeVere Sat 26-Jan-13 11:32:45

Don't forget mimi an immigrant is defined as 'someone I think is one regardless of actual place of birth'

Like my OH and my kids. My grandchildren as well when they eventually come along. Unless we manage to breed that unpleasant tinge out of their skin of course. But that would mean some poor decent British family allowing their daughters to sorry, I just cant say it....

mrsdevere you are very right in your definition. DH moved to NZ with his white English parents when he was a child. I'm sure most see him as a migrant, as he sounds like one. But on paper he isn't as he is born here. It's all about perception.

alemci Sat 26-Jan-13 12:21:51

I think it is my business Mrs De Vere to comment if I found it offensive which I did and I have been polite about it smile.

Yes I think some immigrants are on welfare as are some indigenous people so I think it would be best to sort this out first. yes it has been happening for centuries but not as much as it has done in the the last 15 years.

My grandparents were immigrants and grandad had to flee because of persecution so understand I am on not totally unsympathetic towards asylum seekers and refugees but I do think there have been too many economic migrants who want a better life but need our welfare system to house them etc.

Nancy66 Sat 26-Jan-13 12:30:16

The Channel 4 Dispatches three-part series 'Immigration - the inconvenient truth' (presented by Rageh Omaar) was, I thought, very good and well-researched.

I'm sure it must be available to view online somewhere.

MrsDeVere Sat 26-Jan-13 12:48:55

You are free to not take your Lords name in vain as much as you like.
Keep yourself out of my business.

God I hate passive aggression. Its my least favourite form of aggression of all.

alemci Sat 26-Jan-13 13:10:10

fair enough Mrs De Vere but I think it would be nice if you apologised for it and I am keeping out of your business.

By the way I meant to say it upthread but I am sorry that your DH is ill. Must be difficult for you. Hope I am not offending you by mentioning it and I am not trying to be passive aggressive smile

MrsDeVere Sat 26-Jan-13 13:44:58

No. I will not apologise for it.
I hate to break it to you but we get to swear and curse as much as we like on MN and you do not get to make the rules.

You get to not take your Lords name in vain (as you put it).
I get to say what I like about the Lord. You might have a point if I had said 'all Christians are cunts'. But I didn't. I wouldn't. I used a common indication of surprise and alarm, namely 'Jesus Christ!'.

Its not even banned on Radio 4.

I have not seen you policing the rest of the site. Frankly it is bizarre the way you are focusing on me in this way.

Kindly desist. Thank you smile

cory Sat 26-Jan-13 13:45:13

alemci Sat 26-Jan-13 12:21:51

"My grandparents were immigrants and grandad had to flee because of persecution so understand I am on not totally unsympathetic towards asylum seekers and refugees but I do think there have been too many economic migrants who want a better life but need our welfare system to house them etc."

I knew several Brits in Sweden who had come there in pursuit of a better paid job- the scrounging bastards! They also liked the state subsidised childcare and other general welfare conditions. There is an Anglican church in my home town catering for British ex-pats so there must be a fair few of them about.

manicbmc Sat 26-Jan-13 13:55:09

I have an American friend who was being ranted at by another American the other day. He was up on his high horse about immigrants coming to his country. So she asked him which Native American tribe he had descended from and he shut his big fat mouth. grin

Most of us will have elements of other cultures and countries in our genetic make up. We have always been a country with a great mixture of different people. What exactly is this British culture that is being threatened? Are you the sort of person to tut at a Mosque being opened in your street? hmm

Flickstix Sat 26-Jan-13 14:00:04

manicbmc - There is a difference between immigration (good thing imo) and mass immigration, the latter causing very real (and perceived) problems.

manicbmc Sat 26-Jan-13 14:11:33

It is media scaremongering at its worst.

BegoniaBampot Sat 26-Jan-13 14:28:04

Wouldn't it just be great to be told straight up what the actual thoughts and figures were thoughts were on immigration, without them being massaged to fit agendas whether it be those supporting or against it. Would really love to hear what all the politicians say to each other on the subject behind close doors.

Pigsmummy Sat 26-Jan-13 14:43:56

I try not to judge, it is only a short while ago that the Irish came in droves for work and benefits then now have generations of family here (my husband as an example) but the Eastern European immigrants seem to be here in scary numbers and I am fed up with reading about crimes committed by immigrants.

manicbmc Sat 26-Jan-13 14:46:17

I bet the crimes committed by British citizens far outweigh the number committed by immigrants. But those crimes aren't reported because they are too numerous to be newsworthy and won't stir up the kind of hatred some of the media are aiming for.

MummytoKatie Sat 26-Jan-13 15:19:01

Ok I've read the daily mail article and I'm struggling to see what it has to do with immigration from Europe or even immigration at all. As far as I can see (and apologies about poor spelling or if I miss any bits but once I start typing if I try and flick back to check I'll lose what I've written):-

In 2009 there were 16 families living on benefits in large houses in an expensive part of London

Of these 4 were mentioned who either were immigrants or were implied to be immigrants making it seem like this is an immigrant story

Of the 4 families:-

2 have been granted asylum from war torn countries - one of which we count as so evil, corrupt and terrible that for over a decade we have sent troops to fight against it (include the man who is 3rd in line to our throne)

1 has a mother who is from Jamaica - doesn't say anything about her father or indeed herself - but I guess "Francesca - who was born and educated in the Uk" doesn't quite pack the same punch.

1 is Irish. Are we including Ireland in counties we don't want immigrants from? Because I think that ship may have sailed.

So of the 16 families, 2 are genuinely immigrants, 1 is from Ireland and 1 has an immigrant as a close relative. Presumably the other 12 are British born and bred so weren't deemed worthy of a mention.

It also sounds, from reading it, as though the Afghan woman has found herself in the paper many times before. You'd think the DM would have found themselves their own immigrant benefit scrounger rather than borrowing everyone else's.

I'm not saying European migrants are not going to be a problem - I don't know enough to be sure - although I tend to side with MrsDV as she seems to have significant professional first hand experience. What I'm saying is that if you are going to believe what is in the papers you need to read the paper carefully. And think about the story that the journalist was sent out to find and whether the facts truly back up that story.

My personal experience is that I have a close family member who was vilified in the press a few years ago. I witnessed the event that was spoken about over and over again. The press stories were undoubtedly excellent for selling papers but had I not known I would not have realised they were about the same event. And I'm not going to say how much quotes were changed.

Harriet35 Sat 26-Jan-13 15:29:45

"I bet the crimes committed by British citizens far outweigh the number committed by immigrants. But those crimes aren't reported because they are too numerous to be newsworthy and won't stir up the kind of hatred some of the media are aiming for."
Of course they do! But we can't deport our own people. We have enough scum of our own, but we can prevent criminals from other countries coming here.

Flickstix Sat 26-Jan-13 16:30:39

I started the thread about mass immigration rather than immigration in general.

There are 'good' & 'bad' citizens in any country whether they be immigrants or not. For me the issue was more about the impact of mass immigration into the UK and how it is affecting/will affect communities and the nation as a whole considering we are in a recession.

I also think people need to be careful about banding 'immigrants' together as a whole entity. People come here from so many different cultures & countries, all will have varying levels of education & will be here under differing circumstances.

mathanxiety Sat 26-Jan-13 16:33:17

What exactly is the difference between 'immigration (good thing imo) and mass immigration'?

Is it a matter of perception? I think it's all very subjective.

'Theoretically you could live in a mansion on housing benefit if you had enough children. You are allowed two children to a room, but boys & girls over the age of 7 need their own room. If you lived in central London and had 8 children you could have a house with a minimum of 6 bedrooms at the average local rental price.'
And some of it is even theoretical...

'The problem is that if most of the immigrants are lower or working class, with little education, and dependants then how can we expect them to contribute to society? All it does is create an underclass living below our own underclass. Not good for anyone.'
...while some don't even like the poor already resident in the UK.

Flickstix Sat 26-Jan-13 16:37:15

Mass immigration is when you have a larger than average influx of people, and in the UK's case we may not have the infrastructure to cope with the influx, i.e housing, health services, jobs & benefits.

thanksamillion Sat 26-Jan-13 17:46:45

Does anyone know what the projected numbers of migrants are being based on? I'm wondering because like I said further up the thread from what I read in Romania there aren't huge numbers of people waiting for the rules to change. The situation is very different from when Romania joined the EU and the first wave happened and most people who want to work overseas have already found a way to do it.

mathanxiety Sat 26-Jan-13 17:50:43

So not quantifiable really?

indahouse Sat 26-Jan-13 20:29:06

Every Eastern European who comes to this country has to work for at least a year before being entitled to any benefits, so I don't understand how anyone can claim right after entering the country??? None of the EE people I know is claiming any.

As for council houses - yes my Polish friends got them while my local friends are still waiting. That's because they accepted tiny flats in dogy areas in need of refurbishment my other friends wouldn't touch with a barge pole. They are now paying running rate rents for stock that would have to be demolished. Housing association is using their money to build naice semi-detached houses nearby (on a wasteland, no trees are being felled), my local friends will soon be moving into. Win all around.

I'm surprised at all of you claiming that the country is overcrowded. We're looking for school for our son now and every primary we visited is desperate for children. Class sizes are rarely more than 20 and some schools have retorted to making composite classes. This is in a very average to bad area. In nicer areas not far from us a third of the schools is earmarked for closure due to dwindling numbers, proof is here:
And here you can check that only 1.5% of land in UK is actually built over, so no need to worry about green land:

I don't understand the pessimism and the urge to dwell on not very well founded dangers, conspiracies etc. I see the same thing in my country, where a good proportion of society is getting really paranoid about the crash that killed Polish president a couple years ago and believes in totally made-up evidence against Russia and some Polish politicians.

Needles to say, I'm not worried about Romanians. I'm pretty sure they will prefer nearby warm and sunny France and Italy. If they decide to up the sticks at all. Eight countries joined the EU in 2004, but Poland was the only nation that jumped at the chance to move.

VivaLeBeaver Sat 26-Jan-13 20:32:25

The mp said on news night they have to be he three months before they can claim benefits.

williaminajetfighter Sat 26-Jan-13 20:46:57

Indahouse - population density is a lot greater in the south east than in, say, Bearsden or Milngavie. It really is quite packed in London and 1 hour drive radius.

Most people immigrating to the uk head to or at least start in the south east. Not east dunbartonshire.

And Particularly because Bearsden doesn't really have many immigrant communities! The Scottish experience of immigration is very different to the south.

BegoniaBampot Sat 26-Jan-13 20:59:14

Indahouse - in the south many, many schools are oversubscribed. Don't know how you can quote the situation where you are as though it's like that throughout the UK.

dreamingofsun Sat 26-Jan-13 21:09:52

idaouse - where we live in the south schools are oversubscribed. my kids secondary rejects kids each year. only the really bad schools are undersubscribed. No primary is desperate for kids here - unless its failing.

they are talking about building 500 houses on green belt land to meet demand. this is agricultural land that has been protected from building for ever - in part to protect the environment, but also we need land to produce food of course.

france has the same population as the uk but double the land area.

i think you must live in the north

sunshine401 Sat 26-Jan-13 21:09:57

O I love it.
The MP says it is the welfare that takes up most of the countries tax. (yeah right)
Now we are over flooded with immigrates that are one day "Taking all the UK's jobs" and the next day "taking all our welfare money".

People really are blinded by the media!!!

indahouse Sat 26-Jan-13 21:50:42

Dreamingofsun, why doesn't your council build, extend or improve schools then? I'm pretty sure the houses in green belt are being built for middle classes rather than immigrants, but DM still managed to make a great headline out of it.

No land will produce food unless immigrants work on it. Only immigrants are likely to choose back-breaking farm work over Job seeker Allowance. And please do have a look on my second link.

Sallyingforth Sat 26-Jan-13 23:05:02

Yes they will have to wait three months to receive benefits. But to a family already hungry in Romania that is no disincentive to coming here.

VivaLeBeaver Sat 26-Jan-13 23:15:43

Sallyingforth, I agree. Someone just before me said they had to wait a year and I was thinking they were wrong. I think a year would me more of a disincentive to those coming with no intention of working.

WidowWadman Sat 26-Jan-13 23:47:02

When I moved to the UK from Germany, theoretically I could have had 3 months worth of Job Seekers' paid for by the German state. After that I would have had to return to Germany. I think that's the same rule for other EU countries, too.

Thankfully I found a job straight away and paid hefty tax in the first few months as it takes ages to sort out a national insurance number and until you've got it you're put onto an emergency tax code.

Can you even claim benefits in the UK without an NI number?

Trazzletoes Sat 26-Jan-13 23:55:41

I've only read the first 2 pages so apologies if this has been covered, but no. EU citizens cannot just arrive here and start claiming benefits. They have to have worked or been job-seeking for a period of 6 months first.

The problem is that Jobcentre staff are not doing their jobs properly and don't check so often it is possible to start claiming benefits when you are not entitled to them.

roughtyping Sun 27-Jan-13 00:12:35

Indahouse - Scotland and its schools are v different from English schools I think. Lots of them have 3 form entry etc (which is what is being proposed for EDC, ive worked in one school with three form entry and it was one of the biggest schools in Glasgow).

However, EDC might be different but lots of areas of Glasgow have high numbers of Eastern Europeans. They are living in places no one else wants to live. They are not taking houses because no Scottish people will consent to live in them. I feel rotten for people coming here looking for something better - esp the children. They can be sent across the city to a school in a totally different area.

mathanxiety Sun 27-Jan-13 00:19:12

Sunshine401 -- very funny post and so true.

GothAnneGeddes Sun 27-Jan-13 00:32:07

EU citizens cannot claim asylum either, there is only a limited list of countries you can claim asylum from.

So whoever it was upthread, who claimed that Romanians can come over and claim a house are talking rubbish.

I have read several articles that the predicted clamour to come to the UK is somewhat overstated. Bulgaria is doing quite well in the recession, Romania is also seeing growth.

I'm not ok with Australia being help up as a shining example of anything immigration wise.

Trazzletoes Sun 27-Jan-13 08:56:52

God no, Australia's immigration system is barbaric!

Trazzletoes Sun 27-Jan-13 08:58:49

There's no list of countries from which you can claim asylum. However there is a list (the white list) of countries from which if a citizen claims asylum it will be certified as being unfounded and automatically refused with no right of appeal. EU countries are on this list.

lainiekazan Sun 27-Jan-13 12:54:26

The problem is that people at the bottom of the heap may well wish to come here in large numbers. It is stating the obvious that an established doctor/dentist/engineer would not be upping sticks and coming to Britain. However, my experience of Italy is that the Roma who have entered there in large numbers are a problem.

And don't tell me there isn't one because I have witnessed it repeatedly with my own eyes: public gardens no go areas in daylight , huge increase in street crime, pressure on schools and health services. These are not people who are working (Moroccans have cornered the market in building work and there is a Russian work scheme whereby people can come and look after old people etc) to contribute in any way.

Mosman Sun 27-Jan-13 13:48:04

FreudiansSlipper I've worked in recruitment in Australia for 5 years 2000-2005 and the past 6 months and not interviewed on indigenous person for any role at all, not even the equality and indigenous support positions which is a shame but they do have to meet us half way and apply to the advertisements.

dreamingofsun Sun 27-Jan-13 13:55:18

idahouse - houses being proposed for the green belt are a mix of larger houses and affordable housing. yes some of it will be for middle classes - we have a lot of people who move here from london because they no longer want to live there - schooling apparently is an issue in london, especially in some areas where english is no longer the predominant language.

the local authority has built a further school, but they are all still oversubscribed.

LayMizzRarb Sun 27-Jan-13 18:18:40

Australia's immigration policies protect those who already reside and pay taxes in the country. You cannot sustain a welfare system if there is increasing need each year without the extra funds. They will have to raise taxes and cut benefits just like they have in this country.
A mother can stand at her front door and feed every hungry child she sees going by, but there will come a time when there is no food left, not even for her own children.

flatpackhamster Sun 27-Jan-13 18:40:12

I was going to leave this thread alone, crammed as it is with the usual suspects who, because their lives are so blissfully unaffected by mass immigration, think it's marvellous. However, the extraordinary post below forced me out of my torpor.


EU citizens cannot claim asylum either, there is only a limited list of countries you can claim asylum from.

So whoever it was upthread, who claimed that Romanians can come over and claim a house are talking rubbish.

They can. Next year, Romanians and Bulgarians can travel anywhere within the EU, settle and work there, and have the right to claim benefits, including housing. That's what being in the EU means. It creates a level playing field, except that it isn't level because we don't all speak the same language and we don't all earn the same. The result of that is that everyone comes to the UK, which is rich and which speaks English.

I have read several articles that the predicted clamour to come to the UK is somewhat overstated. Bulgaria is doing quite well in the recession, Romania is also seeing growth.

Bulgaria is doing quite well? 44% of the country lives in poverty. Not 'British' poverty, which isn't poverty at all, but real poverty.

The average salary in Romania is about $4,000 a year. Their economy is corrupt and moribund. Its economy has shrunk every year for the last three years. It's an economic and political basket case, and as of next year every single Romanian will have the right to come to the UK.

The estimates of migration next year are wrong, by at least a factor of two. I estimate at least a million will have arrived by 2017.

I'm not ok with Australia being help up as a shining example of anything immigration wise.

Australia's system is a shining example of how to secure a country and protect unskilled and semi-skilled workers from wage deflation and competition for scarce public services.

BegoniaBampot Sun 27-Jan-13 18:53:12

This all confusing, I watched a documentary recently about young Poles in the UK. They all had to find work to pay for their rent and costs or they generally went home if they couldn't support themselves in the UK. Didn't look like anything was just handed to them.

flatpack I would love to know where you get your figures from (particulrly 1 million by 2017)?

I like the website you link to - it shows that there has been some growth in the Romanian economy, a small dip in unempolyment after some growth and a drop in net migration. And the latest figures show that 21% of Romanians live below the poverty line (although I agree its a very different poverty line to that of the UK). They also seem to be doing fairly well with industrial production.

ComposHat Sun 27-Jan-13 20:03:48

I think that if people are going to monger there are other options when it comes to mongering, rather than scare. If they want anything to monger may i suggest the following alternatives:


GothAnneGeddes Mon 28-Jan-13 00:56:41

Flatpack -

1) I live just outside of Birmingham in an a hugely multi-cultural area, with lots of immigration from the Windrush era right up until the present day. I am also married to a Non-EU immigrant, now UK citizen, so have personal experience of the UK immigration system.

2) EU citizens cannot claim asylum. Repeat: they cannot claim asylum. As discussed upthread, there is no instant benefits or housing for them, others have described the process in greater detail, I suggest you go and read it.

As for your comments about what is real poverty and what is not... I was going to go into a discussion about methods of measuring poverty and that it important to look not just as poverty but at social inequality too, but considering that you're probably the sort of person who'd start ranting about flat-screen televisions, I can't be bothered.

As pretty stated, both Romania and Bulgaria are predicted to have economic growth, also travel patterns vary from country to country, Italy is likely to be a more attractive option for Romanians then the UK, for example. Hungary is a long term EU member, yet has had very little outward migration, despite also having similar economic issues, the same goes for Estonia and Slovenia.

Compo - quite.

Harriet35 Mon 28-Jan-13 01:19:25

Australia's immigration policy is the one that we should adopt.

Mosman Mon 28-Jan-13 04:10:30

Australia is raising taxes and adopting protectionism and you know what, the Australian's don't seem to mind in the slightest as long as the immigration policy is kept under control. That's what wins elections and is important to them, to preserve the life they have for their children.
It's certainly not the land of milk and honey that many expect but if you've got a pulse and want a job you'll get one.

mathanxiety Mon 28-Jan-13 04:49:27

So as of today, Flatpack, Romanians can't actually claim a house, etc. ?

They will have to wait until next year to do that? In the meantime, are they 'claiming houses'?

thanksamillion Mon 28-Jan-13 06:26:16

I've said this several times already but I agree with Goth. From what I hear in Romania there just aren't hoards of people just waiting to come. Those that wanted to have found a way, and the UK just isn't the first choice for lots. Italy is much more similar in terms of culture and Italian is very easy for Romanian speakers to pick up.

Does anyone know where you can get stats on how many migrants are leaving (iyswim)? because the other thing is that most people here who have left to work abroad have done so on a temporary basis, often leaving family behind, and fully intend to come back.

Flossle Mon 28-Jan-13 09:09:43

this article this morning about government plans to curb immigration

Flossle Mon 28-Jan-13 09:11:44
flatpackhamster Mon 28-Jan-13 17:10:29


flatpack I would love to know where you get your figures from (particulrly 1 million by 2017)?

That's my estimate. When the government allowed Poles and other migrants in early and without limits, its estimate for total migration was out by a factor of 5. I think that the current estimates are also likely to be out by the same.

I like the website you link to - it shows that there has been some growth in the Romanian economy, a small dip in unempolyment after some growth and a drop in net migration. And the latest figures show that 21% of Romanians live below the poverty line (although I agree its a very different poverty line to that of the UK). They also seem to be doing fairly well with industrial production.

In 20 years time, they may be ready to join the EU.


1) I live just outside of Birmingham in an a hugely multi-cultural area, with lots of immigration from the Windrush era right up until the present day. I am also married to a Non-EU immigrant, now UK citizen, so have personal experience of the UK immigration system.

That isn't personal experience of the UK immigration system. Nor does it have any bearing here apart from as a tool for you to imply your social superiority. Sorry, that only works on Guardian readers, not on me.

2) EU citizens cannot claim asylum. Repeat: they cannot claim asylum. As discussed upthread, there is no instant benefits or housing for them, others have described the process in greater detail, I suggest you go and read it.

I never said they could. Repeat: I never said they could.

I suggest you re-read my post in greater detail.

As for your comments about what is real poverty and what is not... I was going to go into a discussion about methods of measuring poverty and that it important to look not just as poverty but at social inequality too, but considering that you're probably the sort of person who'd start ranting about flat-screen televisions, I can't be bothered.

I'm sure you're the sort of person who is so convinced of their moral superiority that they can't imagine for a moment that anyone could question their authority.

What a shame you have no actual arguments and so you resort to arguing about things you imagine I might have said.

As pretty stated, both Romania and Bulgaria are predicted to have economic growth, also travel patterns vary from country to country, Italy is likely to be a more attractive option for Romanians then the UK, for example.

I can 'predict' economic growth. Doesn't mean it's going to happen. And why on earth would Romanians go to Italy? Not only are there no jobs there for anyone but Italians, there's casual violence against Roma and they don't speak Italian?

Hungary is a long term EU member, yet has had very little outward migration, despite also having similar economic issues, the same goes for Estonia and Slovenia.

[[ Estonia has the largest outward migration of any of the 27 EU nations.]

Do you even check your facts before you make spurious claims , or do you imagine that your Multi-Culti credentials mean that you don't have to?


So as of today, Flatpack, Romanians can't actually claim a house, etc. ?

My post specifically said 'next year'. I wrote 'next year' and I meant 'next year'.

They will have to wait until next year to do that? In the meantime, are they 'claiming houses'?

No. Nor will they be able to use the asylum system to do so.

It's funny, but I notice a theme here. I notice an awful lot of people trying to address arguments I never made.

Hesterton Mon 28-Jan-13 18:58:50

Another voice to add to the group who feel this is scaremongering.

And my experience of the considerable number of new arrivals from Romania and Bulgaria to the very non-affluent area on London in which I work is that families live in (often over-crowded) privately rented accommmodation, work extremely hard for long hours with low pay and contribute considerably by supporting their children's education - tax payers of tomorrow.

Another point which needs making for the sake of clarity - Roma are are Slovakian, Polish, Bulgarian, Serbian, Croatian, Czech, Romanian, Hungarian and yes, English too. We have our own English Roma population who speak English Romanes. There is no universal Romani culture, but there are elements that are common to all Roma such as belief in God (Del) and in Devil (beng), loyalty to family, and belief in predestiny. Roma have an extraordinary adaptability to altering conditions which facilitates their settling in different places. The customs and traditional values of the Romani culture are diverse around the globe and there is no ethnic group that can be identified as the 'true Roma'.

The majority of Romanians who are coming into our area are not actually Roma.

Romanian education is generally very traditional and thorough - children come with strong transferrable skills and are more often than not prepared to work very hard to be successful. I have not met any who aspire to a life on the amazing perks of being unemployed in the UK, strangely.

thanksamillion Mon 28-Jan-13 19:05:59

Thank you Hesterton I was just about to make the same point about Roma and Romanians not necessarily being the same thing.

flatpackhamster And why on earth would Romanians go to Italy? Not only are there no jobs there for anyone but Italians, there's casual violence against Roma and they don't speak Italian? As I said earlier, I am in a neighbouring country to Romania, speak Romanian and know many Romanians. Italy is a very popular choice. Yes it's harder to find work now, but there are many established Romanian comunities there, the culture is more similar and linguistically Italian is very similar to Romanian. A Romanian speaker can generally understand Italian without too much difficulty. You may find it hard to believe but it is true. And as Hesterton said not all Romanians are Roma.

MummytoKatie Mon 28-Jan-13 20:08:20

Flatpack If GothAnne husband is anything like mine she does have personal experience of immigration. I have a dh who used to be part self employed and got plenty of experience of tax returns from it!

MummytoKatie Mon 28-Jan-13 20:14:35

thanksamill is the "Roman" in Romania connected to the Romans? If so - it would make perfect sense that Romanian and Italian are similar languages.

Hesterton Mon 28-Jan-13 20:21:35

Roma is Sanskrit (ancient Indian language) for male member of a band of low caste musicians. Its roots have no connection to the similar sounding 'Romania'.

MummytoKatie Mon 28-Jan-13 22:36:58

sulks in disappointment

mathanxiety Tue 29-Jan-13 03:51:19

Flatpack, I was trying to clarify the issue of who is taking houses, etc., from Britons, and since so many people have bandied around the term 'mass immigration' and since Romanians have been singled out as members of that nebulous 'mass', with mutterings about immigrants claiming houses, etc., I am glad you were able to point out that Romanians are not the baddies here. If they are out of the running for Public Offender Number One then who is left in?

Are we confusing Romanians and Roma here to some extent Flatpack? The Roma live all over Europe and in the British Isles. British Roma have lived on the island for centuries.

mathanxiety Tue 29-Jan-13 03:52:52

x post a bit

Hesterton Tue 29-Jan-13 06:08:23

MummytoKatie , you're right about 'Romania' coming from the Latin for Roman! It's just that the etymology of Roma has nothing to do with the etymology of Romania.

flatpackhamster Tue 29-Jan-13 11:05:47


Somebody may be getting mixed up between Romanians and Roma, but it isn't me.


Flatpack If GothAnne husband is anything like mine she does have personal experience of immigration. I have a dh who used to be part self employed and got plenty of experience of tax returns from it!

I've got personal experience of a baby but that doesn't make me more qualified to talk on the subject of national childcare standards than anyone else.

No, GothAnne was just trying to rub her Guardianista credentials in my face, to show how tolerant and diverse she was.

GothAnneGeddes Tue 29-Jan-13 11:12:50

Flat pack - you claim that anyone not concerned about mass immigration wasn't impacted by it, I told you otherwise and you start immediately sneering about "Guardianista credentials".

I do not see giving some details from my experience with immigration as rubbing anything in your face.

Also, you very clearly did seem to be getting Roma and Romanian people mixed up, hence several posters correcting you.

Trazzletoes Tue 29-Jan-13 11:22:31

flatpack perhaps you should read back your own posts where you quite clearly confuse Roma and Romanians...

Oblomov Tue 29-Jan-13 11:38:45

Mrs DV said "There will be no mass immigration."
But wasn't it on the news the other day that the Foreign secretary(?) or someone, admitted that the actual changes that are about to come into force, the figures had been significantly underestmated.
So the gov has finally admitted that the numbers are about to rise significantly. How is that not mass imigration?

Harriet35 Tue 29-Jan-13 12:01:32

Why would anyone that is negatively affected by mass immigration be in favour of it?

Oblomov Tue 29-Jan-13 13:00:45

Or how can anyone possibly benefit from mass immigration?
I don't have a problem with immigration. Of course its healty, good for us, society, business everything.
BUT, when we are at breaking point, and it now becomes 'apparent' that it is virtually mass, i.e that there is an agreememnt that is going to come into affect that will mean many many more immigrants will be arriving, when we are already at breaking point, then surely this has to be questioned.
What are the benefits of mass imm? I can't see one. I see the benefits of immigration, but not mass immigration.
Name me one plus point. How is this good for any uk citizen?

dreamingofsun Tue 29-Jan-13 13:12:01

oblom - under that last wave of immigration i understand it benefited people who employed cleaners/plumbers/builders etc as the hourly pay rates reduced. care homes were able to get enough employees without increasing wages. Basically if you are a private individual who employs or uses the services of people or a business you have been able to get staff more cheaply as the immigrants are usually more desperate for work; are used to working at lower pay rates; and possibly don't have the higher costs that UK workers do (eg mortgage or children in UK).

god help the people who they displaced who had maybe spent years training for their professions.

dreamingofsun Tue 29-Jan-13 13:13:18

oblov - i also wonder if its that great for the countries they leave, especially if its the youngest, most educated, hardest working that go

thanksamillion Tue 29-Jan-13 13:59:10

Absolutely dreamingofsun. The country I live in has been decimated by young people leaving. There are many many children here growing up without one or even both parents because they're working abroad.

But because we're not in the EU many of them are working illegally and this compounds the problems. They go for longer (often years and years) because it's not so easy to travel back and forth, they pay huge amounts to dodgy 'agents' who get them papers and promise work and then are hugely in debt so aren't able to return even if they wanted to.

Having restrictions on who can come and work in the UK doesn't solve this problem.

mathanxiety Tue 29-Jan-13 19:09:36

Ireland was a net exporter of people for about one hundred years. Millions of Irish people left, all young. Millions of women in particular left the west, and communities were devastated. The effects of this were still to be seen in small communities in the west and northwest as late as the 2000s, with a much higher level than normal of schizophrenia, particularly among elderly bachelors living alone or with their bachelor brothers in run down cottages without running water or indoor toilets (women tend to be faster to adopt domestic improvements and to nag men to get improvements done).

At the same time, families were able to use a relative in Oz or the US as a base to send others abroad temporarily or in lieu of enduring poverty and lack of opportunity to go further via education at home, and this was particularly useful when times were rough in Ireland and for families for whom third level education was not going to be a possibility. Emigration from some parts of the west was often seen as a temporary measure, with families coming and going from Boston or New York to towns and farms in the poorest counties. I knew many schoolfriends who were entitled to American citizenship by virtue of a grandparent born in Philadelphia and able to prove it. They knew if they got a degree or some training they could hop on a plane and settle in the US whenever they wanted, with little or no red tape. Irish people could serve in the US military and enjoy VA educational benefits, healthcare and pensions.

And of course money flowed back home that benefitted the local economy greatly. Farmers stayed on farms because they could afford stock or seed or machinery. Shopkeepers stayed in business when money from a rellie tided them over when locals had to ask for credit beyond the normal limits. Bank loans were paid back. The experience of life in the US served as an impetus towards modernisation even in the most backward of places. People liked the nice bathrooms they had in Boston. They liked the flower gardens and the decent public libraries. When they returned they wanted the same in Mayo.

It was and is very much a plus for Irish people to have links to the US and it must be said, for the US to have had a constant stream of immigrants from Ireland to build railroads, canals, cities, sewer systems -- just as they did in Britain too. Ditto for the chance the EU offers to all its members, and the benefits flow both ways. Don't forget in these days of (misguided imo) belt tightening that British citizens can go all over the EU and that educational opportunities in particular are available on the same basis as they are to locals.

The downside for Ireland was that as long as the pressure valve existed, political pressure to improve the economy was relieved. What made a difference for Ireland was membership of the EEC (which meant many elements of Irish life had to be raised to first world standards) and the economic growth thanks to massive expansion of educational opportunities, a change of course on the part of the Department of Finance to favour encouragement of growth, and the sudden availability of markets for Irish products (EEC/EU) that happened from the 60s on. Ireland eventually became a net importer of immigrants and probably will again.

Romania, etc. (if we are again talking about mass immigration of Romanians) may follow the same patters as Irish emigration did -- people will go where they are already established and will come and go, will send money home that will eventually grow Romania as well as the places they settle.

mathanxiety Tue 29-Jan-13 19:52:12

Actually, to be boringly technical here, when I say 'Ireland' was a net exporter of people for a hundred years (very rough figure incidentally), I wasn't quite accurate. Until 1922 Ireland was part of the UK so it was actually the UK from which millions of people from the Irish region emigrated.

Millions of Scots also left the UK over the centuries come to think of it.

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