LETTER : Freedom of movement benefits all EU citizens

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The Independent Online
Sir: The European Union's Migrants' Forum, a representation of more than 130 migrant organisations throughout the EU member states, upholds the implementation of Article 7A of the Treaty of European Union, which requires the abolition of borders for the freedom of movement of persons within the EU. In devising a social contract between the citizens of Europe and the European institutions, it has become a fundamental right of those residing within the EU to have the freedom to move within the community without restrictions.

The migrant communities resent the current argument being used against the implementation of 7A: that this will cause undue hardship on Europeans due to massive influxes of illegal immigrants. Immigration within Europe has added to society and is not an undue strain on unemployment, housing and the general well-being of Europeans. Why else would millions of Britons hire these immigrants? Migrants are, indeed, claiming their rights of social security, but they are also contributing to society by paying taxes and spending money on the national markets.

If limiting immigration is the political goal of some, hindering persons at internal European borders will not achieve this. A concentrated effort on establishing European community competence in this area, achieving common migration guidelines, with harmonised external border controls and a common visa policy, is the only way to achieve a realistic and workable migration policy. A European Union with free movement of persons will enhance the wellbeing of us all, no matter what passport we hold.

Sincerely,

THOMAS OMORES

Secretary General

European Union Migrants' Forum

Brussels

14 February

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