Wednesday, 21 April 2010

Manifesto lesson 3 - Immigration

I think it is time to get down my ideas on immigration - together with the Greens' policy stance.

This will be the first of a few postings on the issue, 'cos it is a mite complicated. The Green Party manifesto devotes just over a page to the topic (pp 45,46).
In one sense we can say it's quite simple, really. In brief, Greens will
  • be fair to all,
  • meet our international obligations,
  • sort out the issues which are causing people to want to move here, and therefore lessen the demand
  • sort out the mess inherited from the existing system, and
  • make sure children, particularly, are treated humanely.
These wholesome aspirations look a lot more complicated, when other factors and anxieties come in to play. These include worry about overcrowding here in the UK, fear of society being taken over by others with a lack of respect for our values, resentment of incomers getting a better deal than ourselves, fear of jobs being taken by migrants, and so on.

The position in Beverley and Holderness is affected also by the particular 'character' of local society, where for many generations there have been quite small changes compared with the experience in other communities.

And finally, for this posting, I don't think we are very good at hammering out local solutions to knotty problems, and this certainly presents a basket of problems which will need a lot of knocking around before they are resolved. This is a place where leadership has been called for, and been lacking. Greens will offer leadership, if the voters make it possible.

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