A Labour government would introduce “managed migration” for EU nationals in the event Brexit happens, the shadow foreign secretary, Emily Thornberry, has said as the party continues to debate what immigration policy to offer at the election.
Senior Labour figures are expected to meet on Monday to discuss the policy, although a final decision will not be made until next weekend, with some pushing for ideas including a rejection of income-based entry, and the maintenance of free movement to and from the EU.
Labour’s campaign coordinator, Andrew Gywnne, said on Sunday that Labour would seek to strike “reciprocal agreements with the EU27 that allow British citizens to enjoy some of the freedoms that they will lose as a result of Brexit”.
In an article in the Times on Monday, the senior Conservative minister Michael Gove argued that a Jeremy Corbyn government would place pressure on public services with free movement, calling the idea “extreme, dangerous and out of touch with the British people”.
But asked about this by BBC Radio 5 live, Thornberry said that if a Labour government left the EU, the post-departure immigration policy would include controls on EU nationals, although those already in the UK would face no restrictions.
The party’s Brexit policy would be to try to swiftly renegotiate a departure deal that included customs union membership and access to the single market. This would then be put to the public in a referendum, against a remain option. Read more