Thursday, 1 Jun 2023

Migrants arrive in UK on small boats as record immigration figures unveiled

Mick Lynch says channel migrants have same rights as Brits

Another group of migrants has been pictured being brought to shore at Dover – on the day record immigration figures were confirmed by the Office For National Statistics. A group disembarked from a Border Force vessel, after a small boat incident in the Channel.

Net migration to the UK hit a new record high of 606,000 last year, driven by people from non-EU countries arriving for work, study and humanitarian reasons, new estimates show.

The figure, which is the difference between the number of people moving to the UK and the number leaving, is up from 488,000 in 2021.

The ONS data, published today, said: “Although irregular migration has also been significant in the past year, we do not estimate irregular migration as such.

“However, people who arrive through irregular routes and then claim asylum are included in our estimates as asylum applicants.

“The Home Office’s ‘How many people do we grant protection to’ article shows that in 2022, 90 percent of small boat arrivals (around 40,000) claimed asylum or were recorded as a dependant on an asylum application.”

Responding to the data, Christina Marriott, Executive Director of Strategy and Communications for British Red Cross, said: “The striking figure released today is the 172,758 men, women and children stuck in the asylum backlog, waiting many months if not years for a decision on their claim.

“Leaving people in limbo like this, unable to work, separated from family and uncertain about their future, is costly to people’s physical and mental health and the taxpayer.

“Processing claims more quickly would help people settle into communities, start work and get on with their lives.”

The estimates also include people who have come to the UK from Ukraine and Hong Kong under resettlement schemes, as well as overseas students – though there are signs that those who first arrived for study reasons in 2021 are now starting to leave, according to the Office for National Statistics (ONS) which compiled the figures.

A total of 1.2 million people are likely to have migrated to the UK in 2022, while 557,000 are estimated to have migrated from the UK in the same period.

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