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Report illegal immigrants Prime Minister urges in new immigration crackdown | Immigration Matters

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Prime Minister David Cameron has urged the British public to report illegal immigrants and vowed to change the citizenship test so that it includes questions on British history.

The text of the Prime Minister’s key immigration speech confirms that he wants to make forced marriage a criminal offence, and makes it clear that Downing Street backs Theresa May’s desire to rewrite the immigration rules so “misinterpretations” of the right to family life do not block immigration deportations.

But his proposal to require families who want to sponsor overseas relatives to settle in Britain to post a financial bond worth thousands of pounds has already sparked a strong warning from Keith Vaz, the chairman of the Commons Home Affairs Committee, that it will “antagonise settled communities in Britain and enrage our allies such as India”.

Vaz said the speech marked the third time the financial bond had been proposed over the last decade, adding: “It was shelved before because it was unworkable. A more effective method must be found in order for immigrants to pay for public services.”

The proposal to make forced marriage a criminal offence will initially be limited to introducing a criminal penalty for those who breach a forced marriage prevention order.

More than 257 such orders have been made since they were introduced in November 2008, but Cameron appears to have acknowledged Home Office concerns that a new offence of forced marriage may be difficult to enforce as it involves the victim having to testify against close relatives.

He said the creation of an offence of forced marriage must ensure that it does not prevent or hinder victims reporting what has happened to them.

In his speech to the Institute for Government in London, the Prime Minister said he wanted even tougher action against illegal immigrants in Britain.

“For our part in government, we are creating a new national crime agency with a dedicated border policing command which will have responsibility for safeguarding the security of our border,” he said.

“But I want everyone in the country to help … including by reporting suspected illegal immigrants to our Border Agency through the Crimestoppers phone line or through the Border Agency website. Together, we will reclaim our borders and send illegal immigrants home.”

He said the drive to improve the UK Border Agency’s record of finding illegal migrants and deporting them already included using credit reference agencies to ensure they cannot get easy access to credit and a targeted campaign this summer that involved 600 operations and resulted in more than 550 arrests.

Cameron also unveiled changes to the citizenship test taken by all those who apply for a British passport. He said he had been to citizenship ceremonies and thought they were moving and they worked, “but here, too, changes are needed”.

“So let me say one more thing abut the journey to becoming a British citizen,” he added. “We’re also going to change the citizenship test. There’s a whole chapter in the citizenship handbook on British history but, incredibly, there is no question on British history in the actual test.

“Instead you’ll find questions on the roles and powers of the main institutions of Europe and the benefits system within the UK. So we are going to revise the whole test … and put British history and culture at the heart of it.”

The test is centred on how British society works, so typical current questions include questions about the Queen’s ceremonial duties, how the House of Commons is elected and the role of the prime minister.

Questions on British customs and traditions include asking to name the dates of each patron saint’s day for the four UK countries and the dates of the main Christian festivals.

But whether those who are already British citizens would be able to pass such a test remains open to doubt. A series of polls taken over the past decade show that a large proportion of those under 30 have difficulty in identifying major figures in British history.

One BBC poll showed that fewer than half could identify Sir Francis Drake as the key figure in the defeat of the Spanish Armada, and one-third did not know that William the Conquerer won the Battle of Hastings. Source: The Guardian.

The speech comes at a time when the UK Border Agency is set to lose 5000 staff as part of spending cuts.

David Cameron briefly mentioned the settling up of a ‘new national crime agency with a dedicated border policing’, which sounds very similar to the previous Labour Government’s aims when it set up the 23,000 strong combined UK Border Agency in 2008 to ‘protect the UK border as one of the largest law enforcement agencies in the UK’.

Mr Camerons’s plea to the public to report illegal immigrants is all very well, but many will ask what the authorities do when they receive a report?

Immigration Matters receives a large number of emails from people complaining that when an illegal immigrant or worker is reported nothing is ever done about it.

Viewers of Sky TV’s UK Border Force programme (brilliantly parodied by David Walliams on BBC’s ‘Come Fly With Me) will know that many illegal immigrants caught in the act of working are later released (and told  to report to an immigration centre) because the agency does not have the facilities to hold people from countries which refuse to take them back without a passport (e.g. China, which takes up to a year to issue a replacement passport).

Not surprisingly most of those arrested have ‘lost’ their passports and following their release are never seen again.

There was little mention of plans to force employers to disclose details of how many foreign workers they employ, as reported in the Telegraph this weekend.

The latest ‘crackdown’ (much of it recycled from earlier announcements) comes at the end of two separate Home Office immigration consultations – one on employment-related routes to settlement in Britain and one on family migration, with both aimed at breaking the link between temporary migration and eventual permanent residence or British Citizenship.

Whilst voters will welcome efforts to control legal and illegal immigration, the fact is businesses need migrant workers, whether it be Tier 2 working visa holders, Tier 4 students or EU workers from Poland, Bulgaria and Romania – health care workers and catering staff doing the jobs that locals, frankly, do not want to do.

Industry also needs skilled migrant workers in the City, IT sector, Engineering and medical fields to fill skills gaps which will always exist in a thriving service based economy.

The massive expansion of the European Union also presents a predicament for any British Government which has little control over EU immigration or for that matter most of what’s dictated in Brussels.

With at least a million ‘A8’ migrants already in the UK from former eastern bloc countries like Poland, Hungary, Latvia and Slovakia, the Government has been forced to maintain work restrictions on newer EU ‘A2’ member states Bulgaria and Romania, which could last until 2014.

The present system of work restrictions on Bulgarians and Romanians – who need permission to work or can obtain a yellow card to study and work or can set up a business in the UK – is no doubt holding back immigration from those countries.

However, once the UK are forced to drop all ‘free movement of labour’ restrictions, there could be a new wave of EU immigration putting further pressure on the non-EU migrants already in the UK and hoping to settle.

See also:

UK Government may force employers to disclose how many foreigners they employ in new migrant crackdown

‘Pet cat Human Rights Appeal’ overstaying student was a shoplifter

Crackdown on immigration fraud – banks and UKBA to share information on debtors 

UK Home Office to close off route to citizenship

Immigration Minister says ‘reforming family migration will promote better integration’

Crackdown on immigration fraud – banks and UKBA to share information on debtors

Immigration Rules for Bulgarian and Romanian nationals

Free Movement of EU nationals explained

Comprehensive Sickness Insurance now required for Bulgarian and Romanian study work yellow cards

Health care workers needed in UK now – Bulgarian and Romanian citizens wanted by employers

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7 Responses to “Report illegal immigrants Prime Minister urges in new immigration crackdown”
Read them below or add one

  1. i jst want to make a complain that i know about some persons here who r living here illlegal so whoever recieve my mail mail me back if u want to know that who r they and where r they?

  2. illegal imagrants cripple this country taking jobs of people that live in this country by working for next to nothing and puting nothing into the system and putting the person who was in a job out of a job making him claim what he is no longer putting in.
    This country needs to close its doors totaly to imagration its getting out of hand and we need a goverment that has acctauly lived and worked with this problem to know how severe it as become instead of do gooders trying to please everyone else but there own.
    we got people bending rules in our system we cant do things that our country normaly does for fear of offending but they can do as they please fly there flags put them in there car windows but who cares if it offends us.
    normaly you go to countrys and respect there laws not try to change them and make a mocary of the system only a weak goverment would allow this to happen but they are just pencil pushers on high wages and never had to live on 16,000 a year and yet my taxs keep going up to pay for others they bring in and yet the goverment each gets 25,000 just on exspendgers then a good wage after.
    This was once a civalized country but now we have people from uncivalized countrys bringing us down.
    e.g look at gun crime and killings muggings rapes over the last 30 yrs its rocketed.
    The way it should be these are our laws and the way we live there are no loop holes and no changes to make if you dont like the way we live then why leave the great place you left and go back simple as but noooo our goverment bends to please others.

  3. Cameron makes me laugh report illegal immigrants indeed,how many legal immigrants are working,how many of them wake up as early as 5 am to clean,sweep streets and all manner of dirty jobs.majority of them pay tax they cant claim and some have their monies in banks that cannot be claimed cos they cant show their faces.The ruth is Yes they are here illegally but they contribute more than majority of us that claim legal immigrants and all we do is sit home and use uneccessary excuses to claim bsseless benefits and now the country is in fanancial stress ,then you talk about reporting illegal immigrants.This government needs to get heir piorities right people are hungry in Great britain and we need a better life so leave immigration alone and face more pressing issues the economy is deteroriating and its cos of bad decisions and ego….

  4. i know so many people are working illegal in the uk

  5. i had reported from last year about a russian illegal immigrantwho lives in flat no 2 no 27 t******* road earls court SW5.
    and until now nothing had happened…so how could we help?

  6. […] Report illegal immigrants Prime Minister urges in new immigration crackdown […]

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