There is the usual difference of view over the latest figures in the UK from the Labour Force Survey reported by the ONS (Organisation for National Statistics).
The Daily Telegraph goes with: “Nearly 450,000 more migrants are working in the UK while the number of British-born people in work has fallen by 120,000, according to new figures.”
The Guardian goes with: “Of the 303,000 more people in work between October and December compared with a year earlier, 233,000 were non-UK nationals, taking the total to 3.48 million according to the Office for National Statistics. UK nationals working in Britain increased by 70,000 over the same period to 28.44 million.”
British workers “falling”, or British workers “rising”. Take your pick. This difference lies in whether we regard being “British” as “British born” or “British nationals”. For what it is worth, I am a British national, born in Ghana.
This is clearly a difficult area. Looking on the BBC website, I find . . . absolutely nothing on this important topic!
The Guardian goes on to say in a related article on wages that: “Employers have also been able to find workers from overseas. Between the final three months of 2015 and the final three months of 2016, the number of people employed rose by just over 300,000. Of those, 70,000 were UK nationals and 230,000 were non-UK nationals. The increase in the supply of labour has helped to keep the lid on wage increases.”
Eh! This is the Guardian, and they note that the availability of non-British labour, whichever way you define it, has “helped” to keep the lid on wage increases. HELPED!
If you are one of the traditional working class people in the Stoke Central constituency who voted for “Leave” in the Brexit referendum, I imagine that you would rather view wage increases as not just a very good thing, but a suitable objective of government policy.
The liberal elite see the quarterly ONS employment numbers as a pit of vipers to be treated with extreme care, or not at all (BBC). Is there any other issue that encapsulates so clearly the yawning gulf between the UK electorate and the elite who have mis-governed them for so long?