Essay on The Immigration Of Britain During Its Eu Membership

Essay on The Immigration Of Britain During Its Eu Membership

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A significant topic of debate has been the state of immigration in Britain during its EU membership. Many Leave campaigners argue that the open migration laws across EU countries has had a detrimental effect on the UK. Under EU law, the UK cannot prevent anyone from another EU country from migrating; meanwhile, Britons equally benefit, enjoying the right to work and live anywhere else in Europe. Many EU citizens have migrated to the UK, attracted by a stronger economy than many others within Europe. There are two perceived problems with this increased migration; the dilution of a heterogeneous society, and the strain it places on services such as education and health care (The Week UK, 2016; Petroff, 2016). Immigration to the UK in 2014 was was nearly double the rate in 1991; roughly 632,000 people migrating to the UK – nearly double the number of residents that left the UK (Petroff, 2016). However, Stay campaigners argue that unfair emphasis has been placed on EU migration, as over 52% of 2014’s immigrants were from outside the European Union (Petroff, 2016). Leave campaigners argue that immigration can only be controlled once Britain leaves the EU, as freedom of movement gives other EU citizens the undisputable right to migrate.

An additional argument for the British exit from the EU is that the EU is undemocratic and unaccountable. Pro-‘Brexit’ campaigners argue that the EU is run by a group of unelected elites who have a wide range of powers. It is argued that EU bureaucrats bring in legislation that has not been voted on in the British parliament, yet supersedes existing British laws that do pass through effective democratic processes. Leave campaigners agree that EU democratic practices do leave a lot to be desired, but th...


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...onstrate that the UK would likely be between 0.6% better off and 0.6% worse off by the year 2030 (Open Europe, 2015).

Euro-sceptics argue that the UK spends far too much money on its membership to the EU – money that would be much better off spent on domestic affairs. The UK’s contribution to the EU is proportionate to its wealth – simply the better off the country, the more it is believed they should be assisting those who aren’t. This redistribution of wealth is done with the intention of bringing the whole of Europe up, not just the countries that can afford to participate. With the UK being so closely tied to Europe regardless of EU membership status, is it not vital that they support Europe in any way they can? After all, chaos in Europe will have significant negative effects on Britain even if they do leave the EU – they are the UK’s closest trading partner.

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