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Telling the real story behind immigration figures

If we're to solely listen to a misinformed media, then it's easy to think Brexit is all about jobs or benefits, writes Thom Brooks

20 June 2016

Immigration has retaken centre stage as the referendum fast approaches. While the issue is a top concern for voters, the public discussion routinely focuses on misinformation or confusion.

This is a problem that infects the debate across virtually all levels. Yes, the public overestimate the numbers of migrants and assume that the smallest group - asylum seekers - are actually the largest. Yet voters can hardly be blamed for what they are told daily by newspapers more keen to sell copies than open minds.

When we hear talk about immigration and how it should be reformed, there are some areas that receive mention to the exclusion of others. Brexit campaigners raise the need to introduce an Australian-based points system - originally established successfully in Australia to help draw more migrants in - as a way to bring the UK's net migration down. Yet few seem to notice that we already have s...

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