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Express readers hit out at Senior Tory’s ‘out of touch’ migrant crisis solution

3 min read

Channel crossings hit 12,000 for 2023 after record daily total

Former Secretary of State Sir Brandon Lewis has called for Britons to open up their homes to asylum seekers in a bid to reduce the cost of housing Channel migrants, but a new Express.co.uk poll has shown readers overwhelmingly disagree.

The annual cost of housing migrants in hotels and barges is costing the UK Government £2.2billion. 

The Tory MP for Great Yarmouth has said that an immigration sponsorship scheme, similar to that for Ukranaian refugees, could help cut the cost of housing asylum seekers.

In a foreword to a report from thinktank Policy Exchange on fixing the UK’s asylum system, he said: “We must do more to galvanise community efforts, such as by expanding the sponsorship model for Ukrainian refugees to other nationalities – so that the burden of supporting refugees is spread evenly, rather than falling on the poorest.”

But he also pointed out that such measures should be delivered alongside “robust measures” to end illegal Channel crossings. 

READ MORE: Senior Tory encourages Brits to welcome Channel migrants into their own homes

In response, Express.co.uk ran a poll from 1.20pm on Wednesday, July 12, to 2pm on Friday, July 14, asking readers: “Should Britons open their homes to migrants to solve the crisis?”

Overall, 11,659 votes were cast with the overwhelming majority, 98 percent (11,412 people) answering “no” against the idea. Whereas two percent (185 people) said “yes” and a further 62 people said they did not know.

In the hundreds of comments left below the accompanying article, readers shared their thoughts on Sir Brandon’s proposal in a lively debate.

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Many readers criticised the concept, with username ollysmyth writing “no, definitely not” and username Peregrine Falcon commenting: “never in a million years!”

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While others slammed the Government and Sir Brandon for the idea. Username Tunnicliffe said: “It just shows how out of touch MPs are towards the electorate and think nothing of taking us for a ride.”

Another, username brandy01 said: “The Government are living in cloud la la land. We’re in a cost-of-living crisis, not able to afford our mortgages, food for our own kids, warmth for our own elderly relatives and yet they want us to house and look after the immigrants and asylum seekers.”

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And username Starbuckbp said: “Most MPs have two homes, so before they are considered for the voters’ homes they should use their own houses. Let the elite who preach to us lead by example.”

More than 12,000 migrants have arrived in the UK on small boats this year, putting pressure on Prime Minister Rishi Sunak to achieve his pledge of stopping crossings.

On Thursday, July 13, the UK Government was given permission to bring a Supreme Court challenge to the High Court ruling last month which said deportation flights to Rwanda would be unlawful.

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