Home » Brexit » What should Britain’s post-Brexit Immigration policy look like?

What should Britain’s post-Brexit Immigration policy look like?

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February 2017

by John Brian Shannon | February 27, 2017

One of the main drivers for the 17+ million Britons who voted to Brexit was that they felt overwhelmed by the large numbers of refugees and economic immigrants in the UK — all of which are additional to the outsized share of EU citizens who live, work and play in Britain.

Two things can’t be stressed enough when it comes to immigration policy; Immigration is always a good thing for an economy, and when immigration loads become too high social unrest occurs.

Therefore, immigration policy is a balancing-act for governments caught between economists and voters

Britain Infographic: Which countries host and send the most migrants? | Statista You will find more statistics at Statista

As per the chart above, Britain has invited a grand total of 8.5 million immigrants into the country (half of which are permanently unemployed) while 4.9 million Britons live and work in other countries.

Certainly the economic case for immigration for countries like Britain is recognized by economists who stress that immigration is a positive, as refugees and economic immigrants typically accept any job offered to them — even the low-paying jobs.

Which isn’t the case with those born in the UK who prefer higher status or higher paying jobs — with the notable exception of young Britons just entering the workforce, or young people working to pay for a university education, or older workers with limited skills.

Britain Infographic: Where Foreign-born Workers Are Employed in the UK | Statista You will find more statistics at Statista

Economists agree; Too much immigration can be detrimental

It can be a life-changing experience for a young person to get ‘beat-out’ on their first attempt at employment by 500 other applicants for that one available job in their hometown, it’s especially troubling for them to imagine (whether true or not) that if the government hadn’t allowed such high levels of immigration, that he or she would’ve otherwise gotten their first job, straightaway.

The seeds of anger, anti-immigration, and possibly of racism, are thereby set early in life.

Britain - Of the 31.5 million workers in the UK, about 10% are immigrants.

Or put another way — “10% of UK jobs are taken by immigrants instead of Britons who wanted those jobs.”

Another item of concern arises when large numbers of immigrants live in one neighbourhood due to the low rents found there, and a process of ghettoization can begin. These become areas of high crime, with certain elements within the group asserting control over their own ethnic or social group. This can be done using peer pressure, ultra-strict interpretations of religious code, by threats or intimidation, or by those working as supervisors at the local factory or farm who can ‘control’ via employee schedule modifications, how many hours per week each worker is allotted.

In early 20th-century America this was a full-blown industry among the Irish, Italians, and later, the Polish immigrants to the United States, which later morphed into each ethnic group having its own ‘mafioso’ to ‘police’ its own nationality.

Britain’s government must play close attention to hitting the sweet spot which occurs between keeping the economists happy (importing plenty of low-wage labour) and keeping the citizens happy, which surely can’t be an easy task.

Who Should Stay and Who Should Go?

Not only should Britain allow fewer immigrants post-Brexit than it does today, it must deter those who would move to the UK hoping to further their criminal career. (‘Richer’ pockets to pick in the UK than in their home country)

Britain can deter such opportunists by maintaining a high deportation rate (much higher than at present) for those convicted of crimes. For economic migrants and refugees, to be caught and convicted of any crime more serious than jaywalking should mean automatic deportation from the UK. (A fair trial on Friday, followed by a deportation on Monday)

A bright spot in all of this is that Britain is better than many countries at ‘weeding-out’ those that engage in crime, and it successfully deports them to their place of origin. Many other countries aren’t faring as well as Britain.

To do it right takes a lot of effort, plenty of police assets and time, and a robust ‘tipster’ system, where those living under duress feel they can safely and anonymously report abusers and other criminal behaviors in their communities to the government. Fortunately, the UK government seems to have a good, if not perfect handle on the deportation aspect of British immigration policy.

Britain tag | Infographic: Which EU Countries Deport The Most People? | Statista You will find more statistics at Statista

And, bonus! Pound for pound, deporting ‘problems’ is the most efficient way to lower the overall crime rate, to lower property damage and property insurance costs, and to lower policing and court costs. Not to mention slashing the astronomical costs of incarceration.

In the UK it is estimated that each new prison place costs £119,000 and that the *annual average cost per prisoner* exceeds £40,000.” — Kevin Marsh: The real cost of prison – The Guardian

Britain tag | Infographic: The EU's highest incarceration rates | Statista You will find more statistics at Statista

It’s always a noble thing to accept refugees into a country, and economic migrants can make a better life for themselves and simultaneously help the host economy to thrive — but each level of government must always pay close attention to the total number of migrants in the UK, in each particular county, and in each city and town.

Far too often only the total numbers across the entire country are examined, with practically zero attention paid to small cities, towns and rural counties. It’s important that each jurisdiction doesn’t end up with a total immigration load of more than 6.5% of that jurisdiction’s population.

Each county, town, or city must have the authority to limit the maximum number of refugees, economic migrants, and normal émigrés within their boundaries to 6.5% of that jurisdiction’s total population.

Immigrants as a percentage of the total population

Many political scientists argue for a minimum of 4.5% to an absolute maximum of 6.5% immigrants-to-natives mix. Ghettoization in the community, and a much higher crime rate in nearby communities, begins to occur at 6.5% of the total population along with other serious social ills.

According to the world’s best political scientists, Britain, with a total population of 65 million calls for a maximum of 4,225,000 migrants of all kinds (refugees + economic migrants + normal émigrés) — instead of the 8.5 million that were in the country in 2015. Almost certainly that number surpasses 9 million now, in February of 2017.

It’s all about Balance!

Overly generous Britain needs to act decisively to lower total immigration loads by half in the immediate post-Brexit timeframe — or Britons need to double their extremely low fertility rate (presently set at 1.88 births per woman) for about 20-years, which seems unlikely.

All the economic and social good that occurs via immigration for the United Kingdom, for the migrants themselves, and for international goodwill, will eventually become undone if Britain continues to carry twice as many migrants as is advised by the world’s expert political scientists and demographers.


  1. Tim Walker says:

    Brits posting to city-data have commented on a housing shortage, and medical services being overwhelmed.

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