Sir Keir Starmer using same immigration language and tropes as Tories
Migrant communities are not to blame for low wages and poor conditions, successive UK governments and exploitative employers are, according to the Scottish Greens.
This follows a speech from the leader of the Labour Party, Keir Starmer, in which he spoke of the need for the UK economy to end its “immigration dependency.”
The Scottish Greens economy spokesperson, Maggie Chapman MSP, said:
"Starmer may try to frame it as pragmatism, but he is repeating many of the same reactionary themes and tropes as the Tories when it comes to immigration.
"He is talking about human beings as if they are burdens or statistics that we need to be 'weaned off' rather than real people.
"The UK has benefited economically, culturally and socially from immigration. Immigrants from the UK have also sought to make homes for themselves around the world. The idea that migration is a problem is small-minded, insular and xenophobic.
"Migrant communities are not to blame for low wages and poor conditions, successive UK governments and exploitative employers are.
"Yet, in the last few weeks alone we have seen Starmer arguing that there are too many migrants working in the NHS while his Shadow Chancellor has criticised the Tories for not deporting enough people.
"It is part of a cynical dog whistle campaign. He is clearly too scared to deal with the real causes of our economic woes: the reckless, hard-right Brexit that he now pretends to support, or the major structural issues that are holding down wages and increasing inequality.
"It is the same strategy that we have seen from previous Labour governments, who were responsible for so much of the infrastructure and attitudes that the hostile environment was built upon. It was wrong when they brought out their "controls on immigration" mug in 2015, and it is wrong now.
“We should stand resolutely with our migrant communities. We should welcome immigration and support those who seek to make their lives here, to work, study and contribute to our communities in so many ways. Immigration is a profoundly human thing to do, and it enriches us all.”