The Labour Campaign for Free Movement has called a day of action fxor 25 April against the Tory government’s plan to illegalise immigration of “unskilled” workers to Britain.
Initial signatories to the statement below, circulated by the campaign, include:
• Nadia Whittome MP
• Kate Osamor MP
• Apsana Begum MP
• Ronnie Draper, General Secretary, Bakers Food and Allied Workers Union
• Ian Hodson, President, Bakers Food and Allied Workers Union
As trade unionists, Labour members and supporters we call on our movement, our Labour Party and our unions to fight the Tory government’s new immigration policy with all our strength.
These proposals will slam the door in the faces of untold numbers of working-class people. Those who they allow in, they will leave precarious and at the mercy of exploitative employers. They will mean more dehumanising, racist and violent attacks like the deportations we recently protested. They will fuel the suspicion and resentment that divide our communities and our workplaces.
In our campaign against these proposals, our movement must be crystal clear: ending free movement, restricting immigration and attacking migrants’ rights will do nothing to fix the problems facing working-class people.
Instead our campaign must stand unapologetically for the vision of free movement, equality and solidarity set out in the policy that was overwhelmingly endorsed by Labour members and trade unions at last year’s Labour conference:
• To defend and extend the free movement of people.
• To reject any immigration system based on incomes, migrants’ utility to employers, or number caps or targets.
• To close every detention centre.
• To end all Hostile Environment measures and restrictions on migrants’ NHS access.
• To ensure the right to family reunion is unconditional.
• To abolish “no recourse to public funds”, guaranteeing the social security safety net to everyone.
• To extend equal voting rights to all UK residents.
These are the principles on which Labour and our unions must base our campaign against this rotten, xenophobic policy.
We will mobilise in Parliament, in our workplaces and in our communities until we win, beginning with the day of action called by the Labour Campaign for Free Movement on Saturday 25 April.