Public backs plans to make firms release list of foreign workers, YouGov poll suggests

Policy also garners favour among majority of Labour voters

Samuel Osborne
Thursday 06 October 2016 16:37 BST
Amber Rudd launches immigration crackdown

A majority of the British public back Home Secretary Amber Rudd's plan to make businesses reveal how many foreign workers they employ, according to a YouGov poll.

Overall, 59 per cent of people say they either strongly or somewhat the proposals, more than double the 26 per cent who said they somewhat or strongly oppose them.

Ms Rudd said firms should declare the percentage of foreign workers they employ as part of a drive to employ more local people.

The policy also garnered favour among Labour voters, with 51 per cent supporting the proposals.

Some 86 per cent of Ukip voters support the policy along with 73 per cent of Tory voters, while 48 per cent of Liberal Democrat voters supported it compared to 37 per cent who opposed it.

SNP voters were split, with 46 per cent in favour and 46 per cent against.

YouGov asked 5,875 UK adults the extent they supported or opposed the Government's proposals to report how many foreign workers they employ.

The poll also found that the only social group where more people oppose than support the policy is young people, with 40 per cent opposing the policy and 38 per cent supporting it.

Ms Rudd was forced to defend herself after revealing the plans, saying "don't call me a racist' in response to the backlash to her speech.

Her performance, which also saw her unveil sweeping new powers to drive down the number of people coming in to the country, was widely condemned by critics.

Seamus Nevin, head of employment and skills policy at the Institute of Directors, said: “It is clear that immigration will continue to be a major bone of contention between companies and this Government.

"Businesses know that the EU referendum result means change to free movement of workers from the EU, but people were not voting to make the economy weaker.

"The evidence is clear that migrants are a benefit to the economy.”

Parts of her speech were also liked to passages from Adolf Hitler's book Mein Kampf.

The Labour party said her speech would “fan the flames of xenophobia and hatred in our communities”.

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