April 28, 2010
A new report out today examines the cost of granting an amnesty to an illegal immigrant. The report, by think tank Migrationwatch, follows their estimate last week that there are about 1.1 million people living illegally in the UK. Many of them are working on the black market at less than the minimum wage.
The report examines the cost to the tax payer over the life time of an illegal immigrant who has been granted an amnesty and therefore full access to the welfare state at the age of 35. It assumes that obtaining legal status will, on average, allow the migrant to earn 50% more than the legal minimum wage.
For a single person the cost would be £220,000 rising to £660,000 if he or she were to be unemployed throughout.
For a family with two children and both parents working the cost would be £170,000. With only one spouse working the cost comes to £560,000 and, if they are both unemployed, the total adds up to just over £1 million.
Commenting, Sir Andrew Green, Chairman, Migrationwatch, said ‘At a time when the government have run out of money and our national debt is shooting up, it is crazy to suggest that these vast sums should be spent rewarding people who have been breaking our laws for many years and competing unfairly with British workers.’