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MP welcomes fall in migration figure
12:00am Wednesday 3rd October 2012 in Andover
CLAIRE Perry, MP for the Devizes constituency, has welcomed the first fall in net migration into the UK since 2008.
Recent figures from the Office for National Statistics (ONS) show that estimated net migration in the UK fell to 216,000 in the year to December 2011, from 252,000 in the year to December 2010, as a raft of recent reforms to the immigration system start to bite.
The MP, whose constituency covers Tidworth and Ludgershall , said: “I know that immigration is an issue that concerns many people in the constituency and I know how deeply frustrated they are about the chaos which was the hallmark of our immigration system for too long.
“For years under Labour, immigration was out of control with net migration to Britain reaching more than 2.2 million people between 1997 and 2010.
“We now have a Government which is doing what is needed to bring immigration under control.
“Economic migration has been capped, bogus students are being turned away, and the rules on family migration are being made more robust. Immigration is still too high but I know the Government is committed to continuing.
“Its aim is to bring it down to sustainable levels, from the hundreds of thousands to the tens of thousands.”
We asked local people for their views on the issue.
Robert Hickman, from Andover, is pleased to hear about the net fall. He said: “I welcome the reduction, the country is far too densely populated as it is.
“Large proportions come here and seek welfare benefit and receive more than older pensioners who have been here all their lives and it’s worse with some gaining false asylum.”
Adelle Kness, a student at Winchester University, said: “Unemployment is a major concern all over the country now and with more people coming into the country the competition for vacancies is increased, but with the net fall this will lessen.
“Also it costs and this means others don’t get enough including the elderly.”
Norman Burgess, 90, a lifelong Andoverian, said: “The falling numbers sound like a good thing to me as at the moment there is barely enough money to help the people that really deserve it and have worked here during their lifetime.
“They should be entitled to support and help.”