UK Citizens Should be Given Priority over other EU Citizens When Applying for a Job in the UK
The UK has entered into a Recession and is suffering under a Credit Crunch, Unemployment is on the Rise, and Yet EU Citizens are being handed contracts to come over from other countries and fulfil jobs without them first being offered to UK citizens. Is this reasonable considering unemployment rates are soaring, and is this even legal considering the rights and duties involved in EU membership?
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British Citizens Need all the Help they can Get in a Recession
British people are going through a dire economic climate at the moment and need all the jobs being offered in the UK to be offered to them. It seems illogical for British citizens to be forced to be idle and not use their skills and talents in a productive manner unnecessarily. This is clearly an issue of fairness: jobs created within the UK should be given to qualified British workers first and foremost, before they look at other applicants.
Unemployment rates are rising and people up and down the country are already suffering due to the economic downturn. Not only are British workers losing their jobs, but they are being replaced by foreign workers. Their jobs still exist but are being taken by people who will work for less. 2,500 people are being made redundant everyday, nearly 600 small firms are collapsing every week and unemployment has jumped to 1.9 million. This is the largest number of people who are out of work and looking for a job since Labour came to power in 1997 – and it is predicted to keep on climbing.
The Prime Minister’s supporters insist that ensuring British jobs for British people is all about equipping the long-term unemployed in Britain to do the jobs needed in an increasingly skills-based economy.
From dawn, thousands of angry workers stood on picket lines in freezing conditions in a wave of illegal strikes not seen for decades. Many directed their fury at the elected Mr Brown: “This is our vision: Britain leading the global economy… drawing on the talents of all to create British jobs for British workers”. No, this was not going to happen overnight, but Government’s own statistics show that, in the 12 months after Mr Brown’s speech, the number of foreign workers rose by 175,000 as the number of British in work fell by 46,000 [[http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1131708/British-jobs-British-workers-Wildcat-strikes-spread-foreign-workers-shipped-UK.html]]
Is this a move towards full employment for whom, exactly?
This is a very short sighted argument. The recession is not a phenomenon occurring only in Britain, it hits the whole of Europe, and even to countries further a field. Foreign workers are coming into Britain to try and forge a life for themselves. If you look into your own life history, I am sure you will find that you are not of pure British blood. It is Britain’s openness to migrants that has lead to it being able to build itself up to the strong economy it once had, an example would be the rail roads, mostly build with Irish hands. Britain, more recently, has a shortage of secondary school teachers, and migrants are needed to fill these positions. It is simply unfair to block "foreigners" for some jobs and beg for them in other jobs.
Gordon Brown Promised This
At the Labour party conference in September 2007, Gordon Brown pledged: 'This is our vision: Britain leading the global economy . . . drawing on the talents of all to create British jobs for British workers.' We should now hold him accountable for this promise to his party and the electorate. The electorate and Labour Party supporters are understandably very upset that he had no intention of keeping his promise - now British jobs are being rapidly depleted, he has not acted upon this pledge and should be forced to make good on his word.
The clear implication was that Mr Brown was using ‘dog whistle’ tactics to appeal to working class voters who have deserted Labour. He was using coded language to say one thing to the general public that would get them on his side.
Illegal under EU and British Law
As part and parcel of being an EU member, EU citizens are given the right to work in any of the 27 EU states (although temporary restrictions apply for Romania and Bulgaria). This is a freedom that British people have exploited as much as citizens from other EU states. It is actually illegal to dismiss job applications from people legally residing and working in the UK as this is a form of discrimination under which victims may sue for justice.
Discrimination of non-British people is a crime and workplaces who practice this will be liable to hefty lawsuits which, I think everyone can agree, they cannot afford to fritter money away on during the economic downturn.
The proponents rely on unsatisfactory data to argue for withdrawal.
1) The 'Thatcher compromise' ensures that grants and contributions roughly balance out.
2) No reliance can be placed on the immigration/emigration figures, because these cover EU and non-EU nationals. Further: without breaking the entrants down into workers, students, investors, dependants etc, no view can be formed as to the likely benefit/burden of their arrival.
3) UK Race Relations legislation long precedes the relevant EU Directive, which indeed is substantially based on the Race Relations Act 1976.
4) 60% of the UK trade is with the EU. If Britain withdrew it would still have to adhere to trade etc directives without, however, the benefit of having an input into their formulation. This must be to Britain's traders disadvantage.
The simple response to this would be to pull out of the European Union. Not only does Britain have to pay for the "privilege" of being in the Community, but British people are not benefiting from the free movement rules as much as other Member State nationals. Britain has a net gain of immigrants, which means that more people migrate into Britain than migrate out. That means that other Member States are taking advantage of British soil using the free movement rules, yet Brit’s are not getting benefiting from the rules. Therefore, we should pull out of the European Union and live independently without the migrants.
How do we Define UK Citizens?
Definition by formal citizenship alone is a fairly narrow standard. What about the many thousands of people who are originally from another country and have lived in the UK for decades? Do we discriminate against them?
And how do we prioritize? Should applicants show proof of nationality?
Clearly this is unfeasible because this practice is illegal, so we would be left to discriminate on accent and appearance, the latter being something which is particularly contoversial as it would involve assumptions of nationality by appearance which would, either consciously or subconsciously involve racism.
Obsessiveness with 'British jobs for British people' should be kept to the narrow British National Party (BNP) discussion level and should not be brought out into the fore as a topic for heated debate and discussion.
British people should not be tempted into thinking differently on these topics because we are living through an economic downturn - let the recession make us into better, not worse people.
It is representative of a far right view
‘British jobs for British people’ caused discomfort in the Labour ranks, some of whom felt it had overtones of the far right. Tory leader David Cameron seized on this argument and likened ‘British jobs for British workers’ to a leaflet from the British National Party: ‘Keep British jobs for British workers’.
Of course David Cameron picked up on this during a stormy Queen’s Speech debate in the Commons – as he sought to inflict maximum damage on Mr Brown in front of his own MPs. This argument is completely discredited: politicians do anything they can to twist the words of their opponent [[http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk_politics/7097837.stm]].
Many British People Do Not Want to Work
Politicians of all parties argue that many British people who could work instead claim Jobseekers’ Allowance or Incapacity Benefit. Mark Rye, of the employment firm DKM Labour Solutions, explained: “It’s a lot easier to find jobs for these people because these are the people applying for the jobs”. Vacancies have to be filled, either by British citizens or foreign workers. [[http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk_politics/7097837.stm]]
Perhaps this is a stereotype: as unemployment climbs, the majority will take any job at any wage as the situation becomes more desperate.
Migration Makes No Difference to British Wages
Even if foreign workers stay at home, they can depress British wages – if they produce cheap goods that compete with UK ones. Migration, then, makes no difference to wages, which is a problem currently running alongside unemployment. It is time to stop blaming migrants for job losses: blame the government.
This may be so. However, at least in producing products, foreign companies are opening stores in Britain which employs people from Britain, as well as migrants. What we are arguing for here is for jobs not to be all taken by migrant workers who do not create jobs. They simply live on their grey barge [[http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/home-news/foreign-workers-row-sparks-wildcat-strikes-1520672.html]], providing for themselves, taking our wages, and not contributing to our economy when it is in desperate need. It is this to which we object, not foreign products that may take away from British products, but at least they do have some positive effects. And as you say, foreign products will come in regardless, but this is no reason to just allow foreign workers to take all the jobs as well, this is a rather defeatist attitude.
Immigrant Workers Can Complement British Workers
Immigrants can be complements for native workers, in which case they can raise the latter’s wages. For example, if migrant workers help build more new houses, British electricians earn more as they are wired up. These effects might apply to Lindsey oil refinery. The sooner this is expanded, the sooner it will be able to hire British workers to operate it.
This is an indirect help and is not assisting the present climate. It appears to simply be cushioning the blow for all the hardworking Britons who are currently jobless.
What do you think?