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Illegal immigration - what to do?

(293 Posts)
papaoscar Thu 29-May-14 15:05:29

The recent elections across Europe have highlighted the enormous problem of illegal immigration. So what can be done about it?
Some suggestions I have heard mentioned include:
1) sending illegals back to where they came from
2) ringfencing national borders with steel
3) denying illegals access to all but the minimum help necessary to maintain health and safety.
4) denying illegals access to benefits
5) setting up secure and humane holding areas where illegals can be detained
6) carrying out continuous and robust internal identity checks
7) actively liaising and working with other countries facing similar problems
8) encouraging the illegal's countries of origin to get their act together so as to discourage emigration (very difficult, that one)
And finally
9)making it obligatory for everybody to carry proper ID
Whilst some of these measures are already in force, I'm sure that the application of most of them would produce gasps of horror from many elements of the community. So, what are the alternatives? Any ideas, or do we just open the flood-gates and look the other way?

Riverwalk Thu 29-May-14 15:16:00

The recent elections have highlighted no such thing i.e.' illegal immigration' confused

And I don't know where you've heard such solutions .... we must move in different circles.

HollyDaze Thu 29-May-14 15:58:16

You missed one out:

10. Did the French do the right thing by bulldozing the camp (at Calais) of refugees trying to get into the UK?

granjura Thu 29-May-14 17:41:36

One of the most moving and though-provoking French film I've ever seen was 'Welcome' - about a young Iraqui who goes through hell to get to Calais, so he can join his beloved in the UK.

Just don't know what the answer is. As I go to Calais regularly, I can well understand the problems the number of immigrants living there in shanty towns without any infrastructure- and the frustrations of the locals. However, where will they go? There is nowhere for them to go to- no way of getting back 'home' for 1000sx reasons (most have run out of money paid to trasnporters, etc). Where on earth will they go now????
No cover, no food, no nothing.

When I saw the film, I was forced to realise some of them are highly educated, come from good and law abiding families - and all of them are someone's son or, rarely, daughter or grand-son, etc.

I just don't know what the answer is, but what the French did the other day is of the utmost crulety, and possibly stupidity. Of course they will have nothing left but to turn to crime and break ins to survive. Tragic.

jinglbellsfrocks Thu 29-May-14 17:51:01

You can't blame the French government for doing that. What is the point in allowing them to stay there? They know they would be breaking the law if they try to cross.

granjura Thu 29-May-14 18:07:39

I know, but ...

where will they go now? They just haven't got the means to go back, they can't go back for political reasons- they have sacrificed everything to get to Calais, and going back is no longer an option. I don't know what can be done- I agree the UK, or Switzerland, or France, or wherever, can't abosrb them all- I know. But it is hard, tough, tragic- and many of them are good guys- intelligent, well-educated and trained, desperate to work and contribute. I just don't know- but one thing is for sure, if you imagine any of them being your son or grand-son- you'll feel different perhaps.

granjura Thu 29-May-14 18:15:33

How many of us come from desperate immigrant backgrounds- who left with nothing, and were a burden for the host country for some time- before picking themselves up and becoming real contributors? Last generation, 2 generations back, or more.

My family were Huguenots, escaping French vitriolic Catholicism, torture, being burned alive or murdered in the most cruel of ways.

My OH's family escaped Apartheid in 1947- the family split up due to mixed racial heritage. They needed help and support at first- but all soon became real contributors, in more ways then one- all the children becoming professionals of high calibre- and the grand-children and now great-grand-children on the way to doing the same.

If we go back along our family line- most of us are immigrants in one form or another, that is for sure.

jinglbellsfrocks Thu 29-May-14 18:17:10

It's a problem I know, but we can't everyone into the fold. The French will have to sort it out. Perhaps they should have been more careful at their own borders.

Why did n't the French take them into custody ready to be sent back? That's what would happen here.

Very sad, but you have to be realistic. The true asylum seekers should be spread out across Europe. Economic migrants given the boot.

jinglbellsfrocks Thu 29-May-14 18:18:43

So, what do you want the UK to do? Open the borders completely? We already do what we can with the deserving cases.

granjura Thu 29-May-14 18:19:55

I know, I understand- of course there are 10000000s of economic migrants all over the world who are Brits too.

Ana Thu 29-May-14 18:33:32

How many? hmm Anyway, net immigration is still up on previous years, and doesn't seem likely to go down anytime soon.

Grannyknot Thu 29-May-14 18:57:25

papaoscar please don't reduce the people that you are writing about, to "illegals". They are human beings. Please call them "illegal immigrants" or "people who have entered the UK illegally". Because they are all so much more than simply "illegals".

For the rest, I'm with granjura, sorry I don't have any solutions.

As for stemming the tide, good luck with that.

jinglbellsfrocks Thu 29-May-14 19:00:23

They are "illegals". #spadeaspade

Riverwalk Thu 29-May-14 19:07:27

Citizens of the EU are here legally.

Maybe the OP will return and explain what he meant.

jinglbellsfrocks Thu 29-May-14 19:11:45

Yes. Agree citizens of the EU are here legally. But even that could start going too far now, with the ever expanding EU.

MariClaire Thu 29-May-14 19:58:14

I agree with granjura and grannyknot. As a co-resident of California and Arizona, I have experienced first hand the utter ineffectiveness of "solutions" 1-6 and 9. We are still struggling with coping here in the US as well, particularly in the southwest, and for nearly 50 years. Denying basic human rights, including civil liberties is no solution. Creating a hidden underclass does not advance long-term health, education, economy, or prosperity. I have no new ideas that have not already been tested. It is a sad state of affairs all around. Yet, I am hopeful as I see second generations of illegal immigrants thriving within the culture, while also adding tremendous assets to it.

rosesarered Thu 29-May-14 20:08:09

people should be assessed in a proper ie 'human' way. Age has to be taken in to consideration.Asylum seekers are one thing [true asylum seekers, who for political reasons cannot go back] and economic migrants another as Jingle says.We already have economic migrants coming here legally, we don't want illegal immigrants as well.So we must pay for them to be sent back to their country of origin, which will work out cheaper in the long run.The NHS, schools, education, cannot go on paying for the whole world to be included.Of course they must be treated with respect while the assessment takes place.

granjura Thu 29-May-14 20:40:14

MariClaire- we were lucky enough to go skiing in Steamboat a few years ago. The resort was in disarray because they had had a huge blitz on ilegal hispanics- which was very successful.

Then and only then, did they realise they had no-one to clean the hôtels, to run the lifts, to serve in the restaurants- to do anything that kept the resort going.

I also have cousins who moved from California to a gated community in Arizona to escape immigrants. Both of immigrant stock of course.

JessM Thu 29-May-14 20:43:16

I think you are very confused about immigration papposcar

MariClaire Thu 29-May-14 21:11:50

granjura your experience reflects the various ways the US and its very independent states have dealt with the issue. In our young country, most of us are only 2-3 generations from our immigrant heritage. How interesting that your cousins moved to Arizona to escape immigrants as the issues there are even more severe, it seems. Arizona has legalized several no-tolerance programs, some of which are under appeal, of course. Perhaps they lived near one of the border areas that are very dangerous for legals and illegals alike. No simple answers, that is certain.

granjura Thu 29-May-14 21:20:44

Prescott is different ;)

papaoscar Thu 29-May-14 21:50:04

Some very interesting responses to what I knew would be a controversial subject with no effective solution. We have all been sickened by the reports from the dreadful refugee camps in Syria, the bodies floating in the sea around Italy and the harshness and cruelty of life in many third-world countries. If I were a young African I'm sure I would have been lured away by the prospect of Europe's golden life. And the sight of those huddled masses of illegals, or refugees, at Calais recently, within view of the very ferries perceived to be their salvation in the UK, was truly dreadful. By the way the list of possible actions in my original thread is not of my devising: I gleaned those ideas from listening to, reading and noting reactions to this problem from many sources in Europe and elsewhere, and I do not support many of them. But there are no easy answers to all this and the suffering is very real to the poor people involved - my own displaced Scottish ancestors would have known all about that.

HollyDaze Thu 29-May-14 22:37:28

But there are no easy answers to all this and the suffering is very real to the poor people involved

Surely the answer is for ordinary people of those countries to do something about their own countries? En masse, they would outnumber, quite easily, the armed forces. That tends to be when change occurs, not when people meekly obey or leave for another country - sometimes, to make life bearable, people need to be more pro-active.

MariClaire Fri 30-May-14 02:25:11

granjura aahhhh! smile

Nonu Fri 30-May-14 02:55:38

Hi Mari, are you a Newbie?

I am over in your wonderful Country at the moment, Washington then moving down the Oregan coast to San Fran.

Nice to see folks from the States joining in !

sunshine & flowers to you all