One of many things I like about our town is that we have people from many parts of the UK, Europe, the Commonwealth and the wider world living here. This helps make Crawley more interesting and global in our outlook, especially with having Gatwick Airport here and we are of course a very welcoming place.
Like London and the rest of the South-East, our population has grown significantly and while it’s good that people want to join us here, it is also right to recognise that our population cannot continue growing in an unsustainable way. This is why we need greater control of our borders and of who comes to the UK, ensuring we attract people where we have skill shortages, but not to have a free-for-all such as under EU rules.
I welcome the Conservative Government ending free movement, taking back control of our borders and delivering on the people’s priorities by introducing a new points-based immigration system, which will bring overall migration numbers down.
The new immigration system will take effect from 1 January 2021 and will assign points for specific skills, qualifications, salaries or professions, with visas only awarded to those who gain enough points, ensuring we attract the brightest and best to our country. People will be welcomed to work in the UK on the basis of their skills and qualifications - not their nationality. This new single global system will treat EU and non-EU citizens equally, giving top priority to those with the highest skills and greatest talents.
It is also right to require people who come to the UK to live and work to be able to speak English which is not only our language, but which happens to be the global language. This will be a core requirement of the new system.
Have a fair but firm immigration system that brings the people we need to our shores in a more controlled way will not only be good for our country, it will also help take away potential ‘excuses’ that extremists could use to stir up community tensions that seek to divide us.
Councillor Duncan Crow, Leader of Crawley Borough Council Conservative Group
26th February 2020