11 February 2019 – today’s press releases (part 1)

A veritable floodtide of press releases today, so we’ll take them in two parts for ease of access…

  • Govt immigration white paper – an enormous red tape threat to UK businesses
  • Property guardians caught in poverty trap
  • Cable: GDP figures reveal the country is now fairly close to recession
  • PM and Corbyn plot to deliver disastrous Brexit together

Govt immigration white paper – an enormous red tape threat to UK businesses

Responding to a report by Global Future which shows the deep costs to our economy of the Government’s immigration white paper, Liberal Democrat Home Affairs spokesperson Ed Davey said:

Conservative immigration plans represent the biggest red tape threat UK businesses have ever seen – far outweighing anything that came from Brussels.

Local hospitals are already struggling to recruit the doctors and nurses they need, and now the Tories would take millions away from frontline care to pay for the cost of navigating the Home Office’s complex and bureaucratic immigration system.

These policies would be expensive and destructive for employers across the country, and Britain simply can’t afford them. That’s why the Liberal Democrats are opposing the Tories’ half-baked plans to end free movement with the EU.

Property guardians caught in poverty trap

Responding to the investigation by the I into property guardians, Liberal Democrat peer Olly Grender said:

This undercover investigation shows how desperately bad the housing crisis has become. More and more people are living as property guardians in buildings that are dangerous and insanitary and the law fails to protect them.

Safeguards must be introduced before the Government has another tragedy on its hands such as Grenfell. This is a hidden crisis for people caught in a trap of poverty and lack of decent housing and needs urgent attention.

The fact these properties are unsafe and unhealthy to live in should result in a rapid review of the relevant laws. It is vital that the Government now re-evaluate our HMO regulations to ensure that this form of tenancy, in all but name, cannot be ignored and left out of all important legal protections.

There are responsible property guardian companies and they are working hard to provide cheap housing in empty properties. But the revelations in Colchester suggest a more exploitative approach and a growing crisis.

Cable: GDP figures reveal the country is now fairly close to recession

Responding to statistics published by the Office for National Statistics which reveal GDP growth has fallen to a nine-year low, Leader of the Liberal Democrats Vince Cable said:

I am afraid the country is now fairly close to recession. These figures are in fact flattering. The reality is much worse because whatever growth there is has been caused merely by businesses accumulating stocks in fear of Brexit.

The economy is now just bumping along the bottom. These figures show how the closer we get to Brexit, the worse the impact is getting. Far from looking forward to a Brexit bonus we can expect a Brexit tax to deal with the fallout.

There is still time, however, to avoid this chaos. The economy can be given the boost it needs by giving the country the opportunity to exit from Brexit with a final say on the deal.

PM and Corbyn plot to deliver disastrous Brexit together

Commenting on the exchange of letters between Jeremy Corbyn and Theresa May Liberal Democrat Brexit spokesperson said:

It is astonishing that after more than 900 days since the Brexit vote and less than 50 days before we crash out of EU, the PM and Corbyn appear to be starting serious discussions about delivering disastrous Brexit together.

No amount of haggling over customs unions or workers’ rights can disguise the fact that Brexit leaves us all worse off. It is time for Jeremy Corbyn to give up the letters and instead draw his attention to Labour Party policy and get behind the campaign for a People’s Vote.

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