Thursday, March 1, 2012

Miss. gov backs immigration-enforcement proposal

Mississippi Gov. Phil Bryant says if an immigration-enforcement bill becomes law, it would apply to all immigrants "not just to people who are south of us or Hispanic by descent."

But the Republican says violence has caused "chaos" in Mexico, and the U.S. should not ignore people coming illegally from that "very violent atmosphere."

Bryant spoke Wednesday at a Capitol news conference hosted by the Mississippi Federation for Immigration Reform and Enforcement and the Mississippi Tea Party.

An immigration enforcement proposal, House Bill 488, awaits consideration in the House Education Committee.

Two Catholic bishops in Mississippi say they're concerned immigrant families could be hurt by the bill. Bishop Roger Morin of the Biloxi diocese says immigration is best handled by the federal government.


Staff transfer visa loophole is robbing Britain's migrant cap of its 'bite'

The Government’s supposedly strict cap on migrant workers is ‘not biting’, an expert warned yesterday. In a bid to bring immigration under control, ministers ruled that only 21,700 visas should be given to non-EU workers each year.

A report released yesterday by the Migration Advisory Committee shows that as few as 10,000 have entered the UK under the cap in the past year.

However, nearly 30,000 have entered via so-called intra-company transfers, which allow firms to bring in workers whom they already employ overseas without contributing towards the capped total.

The transfers – long criticised as a backdoor into Britain by campaigners – were originally set to count towards the limit of 21,700.

They were excluded after Liberal Democrat Business Secretary Vince Cable protested during a trip to India, where many intra- company transfers (ICTs) originate.

When both ICTs and visas issued under the cap are taken into consideration, there has been only a slight reduction in the number of non-EU workers entering the UK.

The number of ICTs rose from 22,000 in 2009 to 29,700 in the year ending last September. The MAC said the amount of ICTs per million of the population was ‘substantially higher for the UK’ than in comparable countries such as the U.S., Australia and Germany.

Net migration – the difference between the number of people entering Britain and those leaving – remains close to record levels at 250,000. The Conservatives have pledged to reduce this to tens of thousands. Ministers are now likely to face calls to tighten the visa cap.

The MAC’s chairman, Professor David Metcalf, said the current cap was ‘not biting’ but warned that tightening it ‘could affect perceptions of the UK as an attractive place to do business’.
He said the Government would have to keep ICTs under review if it wanted to hit the ‘tens of thousands’ target.

Immigration Minister Damian Green said: ‘We welcome the report and we are considering the recommendations. The Government will announce its decisions in the near future.’

Home Secretary Theresa May will today announce new rules stating that migrants working in the UK must earn at least £35,000 a year if they want to stay longer than five years.


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