SEEKING IMMIGRATION REFORM

The topic of immigration is at the forefront of many different arenas in European culture. The political arena is finding itself ingrained in the issue. Citizens of various countries are voicing alarm at the number of immigrants flocking to numerous European countries. 

The Transatlantic Trends poll which surveyed approximately 1,000 people in eight European and North American countries revealed that 23 percent polled in England saw immigration as the country’s biggest problem. Immigration Minister Damien Green called the last decade “uncontrolled”. Prime Minister David Cameron has called for “tougher rules to ensure immigrants learn English”.

Denmark has enacted new immigration laws placing stricter requirements for immigrants wanting to enter the country and for those already present desiring to marry a Dane. The populist Danish People’s Party was founded because of too many immigrants and is gaining acceptance as a permanent part of parliament and politics. 

A recent influx of over 4,000 Tunisia migrants to Lampedusa, an Italian island, has prompted Italy’s Interior Minister Roberto Maroni to ask Tunisia to let Italian authorities intervene. Calls from Rome have requested permission to deploy Italian police to Tunisia. The proposal has been refused by the country.
Sweden’s parliament saw the entry of the Democratic party last year. The party would like to see the large number of incoming immigrants substantially reduced. Democratic leader Jimmie Akesson thinks current immigration policy has created parallel societies rather than an assimilated Swedish culture.

Some international bodies believe that some immigration laws and policies enacted by some European countries breach European Union law. But, the overall consensus of many European countries’ citizens is that immigration policy needs to be reformed.