Starmer Pledges Crackdown on Businesses Using Foreign Workers

(Bloomberg) -- Keir Starmer has announced plans to ban employers who break employment law from hiring workers from abroad, in an attempt to shrink net migration numbers.

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The Labour leader is hoping to turn public attention away from his party’s infighting and back onto the record of the Conservative government.

Britain has seen two years of record-high immigration, a sore political point for the ruling Conservative party who pledged to clamp down on the issue in the 2019 election.

Starmer didn’t commit to any target figure or date to bring numbers down, telling The Sun on Sunday newspaper, “I will control our borders and make sure British businesses are helped to hire Brits first.” He said employers had become “too reliant” on workers from outside the UK.

Read more: Starmer Invokes 1970s UK Sitcom to Mock National Service Plan

The announcement comes after the first major “wobble” of the Labour campaign, when left-wing candidates publicly complained of a “purge”, derailing the party’s plans to talk about the National Health Service and the economy.

Despite that, an Opinium poll published on Saturday showed the party extending its lead to 20 points ahead of the Conservative party.

Conservative Party Chairman Richard Holden responded to the immigration announcement by attacking Starmer’s fiscal credentials saying, “Be under no illusion – Labour will have to raise taxes by £2,094 for every household to pay for their unfunded spending plans, taking us back to square one.”

Chancellor Jeremy Hunt is also seeking to refocus the Conservative campaign, telling the Sunday Telegraph that Labour “betrayed pensioners before” and will put up taxes on the elderly.

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