December 24, 2013
The number of children in the UK who have non-British parents has soared, with almost nine in ten babies born in 2012 born to at least one foreign parent.
Just three in 10 London babies born in 2012 had both parents born in the UK, and in three London boroughs, as few as one fifth of babies had British-born parents.
Across England and Wales, one in three babies had non-UK born parents, according to the Office for National Statistics.
The number of non-British people who come to the UK to have children has increased, as the proportion of babies with foreign-born mothers or fathers went from 21.2 per cent in 2000 to 31.4 per cent in 2012.
The number of foreign-born people in Britain has quadrupled over the past 60 years, with immigration being at the heart of almost half of all population growth.
David Cameron has announced that restrictions on EU migrants claiming benefits in the new year, which he said would make the UK a ‘less attractive place for EU migrants’.
EU citizens who come to the UK will have to wait three months before they can claim out-of-work benefits, while those who fail an English test will also be denied some benefits.
But the restrictions are coming into place at the same time as restrictions are dropped on Romanians and Bulgarians taking certain jobs when they come to Britain.
Previously, temporary restrictions – which had been extended to their maximum period of seven years after Bulgarians and Romanians gained the right to visa-free travel in the UK in 2007 – meant low-skilled workers were restricted by quotas, employers had to apply for work permits and migrants for an ‘accession worker card’.
Once these restrictions expire, Bulgarians and Romanians should be entitled to claim the same benefits and NHS care as other EU citizens.
The Home Office has proposed a 75,000 cap on EU migrants – although Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg has slammed this as ‘pointless’, ‘arbitrary’ and ‘distracting’.
Meanwhile, Labour’s immigration policy has been blamed for allowing foreign workers an ‘open door’.
Conservative MP Nigel Mills said: ‘The rate of change over the past decade has been staggering. We have to be concerned.
‘It is creating problems for community cohesion. It is also leading to rising tensions.
‘There is justifiable concern about the impact this is having on young British people looking for jobs, and about benefit tourism.’
In 2012, 88,086 babies born in London – equivalent to 65.6 per cent – had either one or two parents born outside the UK.