EU migrants coming to live in Britain will have to prove they are genuinely seeking employment to claim UK jobless benefits for more than six months, David Cameron said in Ipswich yesterday. In his latest immigration crackdown speech, the Prime Minister said the changes were part of a series of measures to ensure people came to the UK for the right reasons after the UK became a soft touch under Labour.
Migrants from the European Economic Area, which consists of EU member states plus Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway, currently have to demonstrate that they have a reasonable chance of finding a job in order to claim unemployment benefit for more than six months, a pretty vague test. Cameron said EU migrants would now face a more rigorous test to assess whether they had a realistic prospect of getting a job, with the ability to speak English one of the criteria.
He did not confirm who will be checking their English Language ability or whether staff at job centres will be running English tests. In his speech, the PM spoke of the concerns, deeply held, that some people might be able to come and take advantage of our generosity without making a proper contribution to our country.These concerns are not just legitimate; they are right and it is a fundamental duty of every mainstream politician to address them.
Referring specifically to the NHS, he added: We have a free national health service (NHS), not an international health service.In order to obtain a yellow card permit, Bulgarians and Romanians are required to take out comprehensive sickness insurance (private medical) cover at a cost of around £50 per month.
The UKBA has not imposed the medical insurance requirement on other migrant groups.