Immigration - it’s going to be a race to the bottom

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Giles Goodall writes with dismay about unfounded fears re migrants to the UK. Yes, there has been no change since January 1, but his smugness about the fears of ‘hordes’ was also dismissed immediately after the Polish were allowed easier migration some years back. Some 100,000 were predicted, over a million arrived.

Yes, they may all be ‘hardworking’ to use the current coalition’s Stalinist cliche.

But one does not have to possess a scintilla of racism or xenophobia to be concerned at this.

Yes, migrants tend to be young and hard working and inevitably mobile and certain gaps may be filled in our workforce, and good luck to them individually.

But there is real evidence that in the lower paid occupations, a constant stream of new migrants prepared to work at the lowest possible wages, with our weak labour laws, leads to a stranglehold on the wages of those at the bottom rungs of our society.

And if some of them are better or harder workers, is this good? Why should the lowest paid, least skilled, yes and even some of the least willing, have to compete with harder workers who inevitably have different economic standards.

This kind of Darwinian competition seems to be held as inevitable by many, but is a sad indictment of our society, and the EU, with its history of social intervention, should be doing something about, not encouraging, the race to the bottom.

Trevor Hopper

Lewes