Trade unionists have spoken out against the “disgraceful and cynical” Immigration Bill. Speaking during the TUC debate on the adverse impact of the Immigration Bill at the TUC Congress in Liverpool, NASUWT member Michelle Codrington Rogers said: “I tea …

TUC Congress 2014Trade unionists have spoken out against the “disgraceful and cynical” Immigration Bill.

Speaking during the TUC debate on the adverse impact of the Immigration Bill at the TUC Congress in Liverpool, NASUWT member Michelle Codrington Rogers said: “I teach my pupils their rights and responsibilities. The right to education. The right to learn in a safe environment.

“Now teachers are being encouraged to spot ‘illegal immigrants’ which will lead to suspicion and stereotyping. This Bill will divide our communities and create a climate of fear in our schools.”

NASUWT general secretary Chris Keates said: “It is inappropriate for teachers to be asked to check immigration status before admitting a child to the school, entering them for an examination, or providing a reference for university.

“Teachers work to foster trust and confidence in the children and young people they teach. They seek to ensure that children and young people have a secure school environment in which they feel safe to learn.

“However, this is being seriously undermined as teachers and other school staff are increasingly being expected to take on responsibilities more appropriate for border control officers.”

Rena Wood from UNISON said: “This Bill is a disgraceful and cynical piece or legislation and should be of concern to anyone who delivers public services.

“To show how tough they are on migrants, government wants to turn the health service and private landlords into a new arm of the border police.

“Under their plans, migrant workers will be charged for healthcare – even for some A&E and GP visits. They will have their immigration papers checked by landlords when they want to rent a home.

“The government says it’s only fair to make migrant workers make a contribution to the NHS. They already make the same contribution we all do when we work and pay taxes. That’s not fairness, it’s scapegoating.

“We need to make the immigration debate less toxic and respond more directly to the concerns that underlie it. And that is about creating decent, sustainable employment and reviving communities suffering from the politics of austerity. This shameful, badly-thought through, impractical piece of legislation is not the answer.”

 

 

 


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Tim Lezard

Campaigning journalist, editor of @Union_NewsUK, NUJ exec member; lover of cricket, football, cycling, theatre and dodgy punk bands

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