James Brokenshire has welcomed news that the Government is to introduce additional measures to clamp down on the abuse of public services by people from overseas. The new Immigration Bill announced in the Queen’s Speech will also contain measures to make it harder for people to prevent their removal with spurious appeals and make clear that foreign national offenders should be deported, except in extraordinary circumstances.
Measures outlined include:
- stopping immigrants accessing public services which they are not entitled to and compelling landlords of private housing to check the immigration status of tenants, facing fines if they don’t; and
- making it easier to remove people from the UK by legislating to ensure that Article 8 (the right to family life) is not abused - Courts will balance the crime committed against the right to remain in the country.
The new measures build on important reforms already introduced by the Government. Action includes cutting out abuse of student visas, putting a cap on economic migration from outside the EU and introducing more robust requirements for family settlement. The Office of National Statistics has reported that net migration has fallen by a third since the General Election.
Commenting James said:
“We want this country to attract people who will add to our national life, but those who will not should be deterred. I welcome these additional measures to prevent illegal immigrants accessing services they’re not entitled to and ensure legal protections aren’t abused by those trying to avoid removal from this country.”