UKPA – February 21, 2011
More than three million migrants came to Britain under the previous Labour government, campaigners claim.
Migration Watch UK said official figures to be released on Thursday will show for the first time that net migration since Labour came to power in 1997 topped the three million mark.
Sir Andrew Green, the think-tank’s chairman, said: “The sheer scale of what has occurred is changing Britain fundamentally and irrevocably and in ways the majority of the population did not ask for, were not consulted about and did not wish to see.”
Describing immigration policy as “Labour’s great betrayal”, Sir Andrew said the introduction of 3.2 million people – three times the population of Birmingham – was increasing the pressure on “roads, railways, housing, infrastructure, the environment, schools, hospitals and the general quality of life”.
He added: “The present Government will have to stick to their guns if they are to clear up the shambles they inherited and get a grip of developments that could otherwise fundamentally change the whole nature of our society.”
Immigration minister Damian Green said: “Unlimited migration has placed unacceptable pressure on our public services over the years.
“That is why we are currently carrying out major reform of the system to reduce net migration to the tens of thousands.
“We have already introduced an annual limit to the number of economic visas from outside the UK alongside new proposals to reform other routes of entry including student, marriage and settlement visas which have in the past been subject to widespread abuse.”