Cor­byn: I want to keep our bor­ders open for mi­grants

Scottish Daily Mail - - News - By Daniel Martin Pol­icy Ed­i­tor

JEREMY Cor­byn said yes­ter­day he would keep Bri­tain’s bor­ders open to mi­grants if he took power.

The Labour leader said he was not against free move­ment and that the UK econ­omy de­pended on for­eign work­ers. ‘What I want to end is the un­der­cut­ting of work­ers’ rights and con­di­tions,’ he added.

‘Many work­ers that are vi­tal in this coun­try to agri­cul­ture, to the care sec­tor, to the NHS and to ed­u­ca­tion have ei­ther left or are con­tem­plat­ing leav­ing. We have 100,000 va­can­cies in the NHS. Our econ­omy re­lies in peo­ple com­ing in from other coun­tries. I want to keep that.’

He said after Brexit the ques­tion of free move­ment with EU states would be open to ne­go­ti­a­tion.

Mr Cor­byn again re­fused to con­firm that an im­me­di­ate chal­lenge would take place if Mrs May lost the ‘mean­ing­ful’ Brexit vote to­mor­row.

‘We will ta­ble a mo­tion of no con­fi­dence in the Gov­ern­ment at a time of our choos­ing, but it’s go­ing to be soon, don’t worry about that,’ he told the An­drew Marr Show on BBC1.

Un­der the Fixed-term Par­lia­ments Act, Labour can call a no-con­fi­dence mo­tion, which would prob­a­bly prompt a gen­eral elec­tion if it suc­ceeded. Labour’s plan on Brexit, as de­cided at the party’s con­fer­ence, is to first seek a gen­eral elec­tion.

Fail­ing this, a sec­ond Brexit vote is a pos­si­bil­ity.

While polling sug­gests that a large ma­jor­ity of party mem­bers want Mr Cor­byn ac­tively to seek a new ref­er­en­dum, the Labour leader has said he wants to ne­go­ti­ate a bet­ter deal with Brus­sels in­stead.

He in­di­cated his pref­er­ence would be to leave the EU with a pact that kept the UK in a cus­toms union and with ac­cess to the sin­gle mar­ket.

Last night a think-tank urged min­is­ters to scrap mi­gra­tion tar­gets and abol­ish a cap on work visas for highly-skilled mi­grants.

The free mar­ket In­sti­tute of Eco­nomic Af­fairs warned the UK’s im­mi­gra­tion pol­icy was ‘eco­nom­i­cally dam­ag­ing’ and ar­gued it was wrong to fo­cus on over­all num­bers.

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