Give Us A Vote On The Future Of Our Land

UKIP is calling for a referendum - Cameron won't give it. Picture courtesy: UKIP's website.

UKIP is calling for a referendum – Cameron won’t give it. Picture courtesy: UKIP’s website.

 

It is becoming clear that the UK’s continued membership of the European Union (EU) threatens a major change in our country that we are not being consulted about.

Britain’s population is projected to grow hugely in the next 25 years fuelled by immigration that results directly from our membership of the EU. UK Office for National Statistics (ONS) figures project that the population of the UK will grow by around 10m in the period to 2037; rising to over 73m.

Such an increase would still leave us less densely populated than Holland and much less crowded than Japan but, to put this ONS forecast into context, it is roughly equivalent to adding the population of a Belgium or an Austria into the UK. All these extra people will need to be housed and fed and schooled. They will need additional hospitals and roads and power stations. Investment capital will be required and, inevitably, it will have to be borrowed from abroad. Property prices in the south east will inevitably rise. And you can expect to hear about many more planning battles between developers and residents.

How immigration is set to grow our population.

How immigration is set to grow our population.

ONS data and forecast of immigration emigration and net migration.

ONS data and forecast: immigration, emigration and net migration.

Also, that 10m number could look small, and the rate of population increase may be much faster than anticipated, if the ONS estimates are underplaying the impact of future immigration from EU accession countries. And, let’s be frank, it has happened before – official immigration forecasts do not have a track record of accuracy.

Whatever the final increase turns out to be, there is little doubt that Britain is set to become an even more populous, even more crowded island, with even more of our green and pleasant land being covered with concrete, bricks and tarmac. Inevitably, London and the south east will merge into a giant urban sprawl to rival the great mega cities of the Far East as the economy of this region acts as a giant people magnet.

Prime minister David Cameron’s recent talk of tightening the rights of immigrants to take benefits may play well with certain right wing elements in the press but it does not affect the likely course of events. Most people will not be coming to Britain to take benefits, they will be coming here to work. And the economy will grow the jobs to employ them because the population itself will be growing.

Now, this change is not necessarily bad. Britain’s population is ageing. Without a certain level of immigration we would be hard pressed to find the workers needed to maintain the economy and look after the elderly. Also, hard working immigrants have a good reputation with employers who are desperate to find staff with positive attitudes. Essentially, the trade-off is that we accept a certain increase in our population in return for importing the people needed to keep the economy ticking over.

Just in case you thought that the future growth continues some long term trend.

Just in case you thought that the future growth continues some long term trend.

But do we really need to increase our population by 10m to do that? And even if we do, we would not be able to hold it at that level, since we would have no control over the total numbers of immigrants entering the country.

And here is the key point. This future population growth is driven by immigration. The only way to slow that growth is to actively control immigration from EU countries. And the only way to be able to do that, given current EU treaty obligations, is for the UK to leave the EU.

So it boils down to a choice between staying in the EU and accepting the inevitability of this increase in our population or opting to leave the EU and taking control of our future population growth.

Our country stands on the verge of a massive change that will irrevocably alter the nature of this land. We should have the right to decide whether or not we wish to choose such a future – but we are not being given the choice. And that is wrong.

There should be a referendum on continued EU membership. Now.

Sources:

ONS immigration data here.

ONS population forecast here.

 

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