Commenting on the article by the Prime Minister in this morning's Daily Telegraph (29/07/14), Atul Hatwal, Director of the Migration Matters Trust said,
"Action needs to be taken to ensure a robust, secure benefits system and that the perception of “benefits tourism” is tackled. Having a fair social security system, where everyone contributes is incredibly important if we are to retain public support for our welfare state.
But the evidence shows clearly that only a tiny minority of EU migrants claim benefits - according to the government's own figures just 4 in every 100 claim JSA.
Migrants are, in fact, overwhelmingly net contributors to the UK economy – they work hard and pay more in tax than the cost of public services they use. A study conducted last year by the OECD and found that this annual contribution is equivalent to over half of government spending on primary and secondary school pupils.
Without the boost to public finances provided by migrants, making up the shortfall would require taxes to rise or government borrowing to go up or things like the number of local school places to be cut.
This is the real story about immigration: if the government is serious about its long term economic plan, then immigration is essential for its success."