One of my largest non-casework 'post-bag' issues concerns immigration. My constituents are rightly worried about mass immigration and unsustainable population growth.
Unfortunately the previous Labour Government allowed immigration to reach levels which were too high. In fact, immigration was our of control. In thirteen years between 1997 and 2010 eight pieces of immigration legislation were passed; however, not a single act introduced made their policy on immigration seem plausible or reliable.
The statistics speak for themselves and under Labour net migration to the United Kingdom (the difference between immigration and emigration), increased more than three-fold.
The Conservative Party and I have long favoured an annual limit on the number of non-EU economic migrants admitted into our country to live and work. The Coalition Government is implementing our manifesto pledge to set an annual limit, and the Conservative Home Secretary, Theresa May MP, has already introduced an interim limit.
Furthermore, the Coalition is reintroducing exit checks at borders and new measures to diminish the exploitation of the immigration system, e.g. student visas and sham marriages. A dedicated Border Force will also be created to stop illegal immigrants entering our shores.
Reforming the welfare system will also have a knock-on effect on immigration. As I said in a parliamentary debate, if we fix the broken welfare system and get British people back to work then there will be a fall in demand for foreign labour. At the same time, immigrants will not see Great Britain as such a desirable place to live if we no longer have such an open-handed welfare system.
I am a member of a group called Balanced Migration, chaired by Nicholas Soames and Frank Field, that analyses the effect on migration to the UK and believes "that immigration should be brought down to the level of emigration". Since being elected I have spoke in every debate on immigration.
The Conservative Party is the most robust main-stream party on immigration and to find out their commitments to control immigration please go here. The Home Office website can give you more detailed information on the Government's actions to curb the number of immigrants entering Great Britain.