Jack Gooch, Letters, October 22, argues that freedom of movement helps businesses import cheap labor to keep costs down.
There may be some truth to this, given that the UK has labor laws that are much laxer than anywhere else in Europe.
Other countries seem to be doing it – hundreds of thousands of workers from Eastern Europe work in rival countries like France and Germany and have to abide by the stricter laws that apply.
For this reason, workers in France should be employed under French conditions rather than in possibly easier conditions in the home country. In both countries, freedom of movement is not seen as a major obstacle to developing the local labor supply. Few people in the UK seem worried that the end of freedom of movement is making it very difficult for young people, many of whom have worked hard in foreign languages, to live, work, study or even travel freely in Europe.
I agree that we can still do it as a couple in our sixties with a reasonable income and the only difference before Brexit is applying for compulsory residency.
But my grandchildren have lost a potentially life-enriching opportunity. For this reason, indiscriminate employment of British youth as grape pickers is actually illegal in France at the moment. I’m not saying this still doesn’t happen, but if it were an accident, the French farmer would risk going to jail for being uninsured temporary workers in England.
I recently had a conversation with an Italian-born pizzeria who admitted how sad it is that her young nieces and nephews can no longer come here and gain experience about our language and culture.
Of course, young people who can hold Irish or other EU passports continue to enjoy their rights as EU citizens, and this is true even for the most stubborn Brexit-supporting Ulster Unionist.
Nor does it apply to professional footballers who have transferred in a unique way as if nothing had changed in Europe.
But the hardworking linguist who is not interested in hitting the ball can no longer use his Spanish language skills so easily. For this reason, The Beatles could never perform in Hamburg. And Brexit paid the German Market in Leeds.
I couldn’t believe it when the Conservative Labor Party haphazardly and emotionlessly took away European rights from my grandchildren, and for that reason alone I will not be able to support Labor in the future.
No one has justified our self-imposed social, cultural and linguistic isolation.
Does Jack Gooch really think that a Lille boy or Dortmund girl working a few years to learn English in a bar in Leeds is a threat to the wealth of the English working class and a risk to national identity?
Or is it because he doesn’t like speaking Polish in the park? If so, maybe he can justify this nonsense.