Red lines have now been drawn, or so David Cameron would have all of us believe as he announced his long awaited raft of new proposals to curb migration from the EU. However, many of them are unlikely to be acceptable to Brussels.
- A 6-month deadline for EU job-seekers to find work or be kicked
- EU workers will not get ‘in-work’ benefits or social housing until they have paid National Insurance for 4 years
- Re-entry bans for rough sleepers and new arrangements to deport EU criminals
- Stopping EU migrants claiming tax credits or getting access to social housing for 4 years
- Stopping migrants claiming child benefit and tax credits for children living outside the UK
Most of his proposals about restricting ‘in-work’ benefits were lifted straight out of the think tank Open Europe’s recommendations. They are entirely sensible and should have been implemented a long time ago. The idea of curbing in-work benefits is so moderate it will almost certainly enjoy support from Jean-Claude Juncker and Chancellor Angela Merkel – indeed he has had Foreign Office flunkies touting these ideas around the leaders of other EU member states for the last few weeks.
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