Today’s Home Office related coverage largely focused on the MAC report on EU migration and anti-Semitic hate crime.
Home Secretary commissions MAC on EU migration
The Times, Telegraph, Independent, FT, Mail, Express, Mirror, Sun, Star and FT report that the Home Secretary has commissioned the Migration Advisory Committee (MAC) to carry out an evaluation of the role played by EU migrants in the UK workforce. An op-ed by the Home Secretary has been published in the FT and an op-ed by the Immigration Minister in the Times’ Red Box morning email.
In a series of interviews, including BBC Breakfast, Sky News and the Today programme, the Immigration Minister made clear that significant work had already been taking place on the future immigration system and discussions had been held with a range of businesses and communities.
The Minister also said the MAC would provide interim reports, which would help shape Government policy ahead of Britain leaving the EU in March 2019. Brandon Lewis confirmed a White Paper on the future immigration system would be published this year and an Immigration Bill introduced to Parliament next year, indicating the Government’s broad approach.
To clarify some reporting this morning, the Home Secretary’s position, as set out in her letter to the MAC (extract below), issued and published today is entirely consistent with the Immigration Minister’s comments about free movement ending when we leave the EU:
The Government also said that after the UK leaves the EU, free movement will end but migration between the UK and the EU will continue.
Both the Home Secretary and Immigration Minister have been stating that, while free movement will end when we leave the EU, there will be an implementation period to ensure there is no “cliff edge” for employers or EU nationals in the UK.
Anti-Semitic hate crime
The Independent, Mail, Express and Today programme report that the number of anti-Semitic hate crimes reached record levels in the first half of 2017 according to a report by the Community Security Trust (CST). The papers note that there were 767 such attacks recorded - up 30 per cent on the first half of 2016 - and the highest figure in the 33 years that CST has collected the figures.
The Express and Independent quote the Home Secretary as saying that anti-Semitism has no place in this country and the Government has improved the response of law enforcement to such crimes through the Hate Crime Action Plan.
Home Secretary Amber Rudd said:
Antisemitism has no place in this country, which prides itself on openness, diversity and tolerance. This Government’s Hate Crime Action Plan has improved the response of law enforcement to these deplorable crimes, including encouraging more victims to report incidents directly to police or via trusted organisations such as CST. This may partly explain the increase in reported incidents.
But I am clear that one such incident is one too many and we will continue to do everything we can to stamp out the hatred and division that blights our communities. That is why are providing £13.4m to protect Jewish sites and made available £900,000 for innovative schemes to tackle various types of hate crime. We will continue to drive forward action and develop new ways to rid the country of antisemitism and hate crime in all its forms.