Illegal workers’ pay to be seized in Cameron’s immigration clampdown
PUBLISHED: 08:47 21 May 2015 | UPDATED: 10:31 21 May 2015
Illegal workers will be stripped of their earnings under “radical” new laws to control immigration being unveiled by David Cameron.
Foreign criminals who face being kicked out of the country will also be tagged and tracked by GPS satellites while “deport first, appeal later” measures will be extended to all non-asylum cases, the Prime Minister will announce.
The plans to curb legal and illegal migration include “rooting out” those not entitled to be in the country, he will say.
Mr Cameron made a “no ifs, no buts” pledge in 2010 to reduce net migration - the number of people entering the country minus the number leaving - to the tens of thousands but spectacularly failed to meet the promise. Under the coalition Government, the figure rose from 244,000 in 2010 to 298,000 in 2014.
He will give his immigration speech in central London as the Office for National Statistics (ONS) publishes its latest round of migration figures.
“A strong country isn’t one that pulls up the drawbridge, it is one that controls immigration,” Mr Cameron will say. “Because if you have uncontrolled immigration, you have uncontrolled pressure on public services and that is a basic issue of fairness.
“Uncontrolled immigration can damage our labour market and push down wages. It means too many people entering the UK legally but staying illegally. The British people want these things sorted.
“That means dealing with those who shouldn’t be here by rooting out illegal immigrants and bolstering deportations. Reforming our immigration and labour market rules so we reduce the demand for skilled migrant labour and crack down on the exploitation of unskilled workers. That starts with making Britain a less attractive place to come and work illegally.
“And we’re going to get far better at training our own people to fill these gaps from overseas.
“Our one-nation approach will be tougher, fairer and faster. With this Immigration Bill, and our wider action, we will put an end to houses packed full of illegal workers; stop illegal migrants stalling deportation; give British people the skills to do the jobs Britain needs. We are for working people. For them, we will control and reduce immigration.”
Under an Immigration Bill to be included in next week’s Queen’s Speech, a new offence of illegal working will be created that is aimed at deterring migrants who enter the country without permission. It will give police powers to use proceeds-of-crime laws to seize wages from all illegal migrants.
Councils will be given powers to deal with unscrupulous landlords and speed up the evictions of migrants who are in the country illegally.
Banks will be forced to check accounts against illegal migrant databases while businesses and recruitment agencies will be banned from carrying out overseas recruitment without advertising in the UK.
Exploitation of workers will also be tackled through a labour market enforcement agency.
Mr Cameron will say: “Dealing with those who shouldn’t be here... that starts with making Britain a less attractive place to come and work illegally.
“The truth is it has been too easy to work illegally and employ illegal workers here.
“So we’ll take a radical step - we’ll make illegal working a criminal offence in its own right.
“That means wages paid to illegal migrants will be seized as proceeds of crime and businesses will be told when their workers’ visas expire. So if you’re involved in illegal working - employer or employee - you’re breaking the law.”
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