There has been no attempt by the Government to build consensus on future migration policy despite the fact that the issue was subject to heated, divisive and at times misleading debate during the referendum campaign in 2016.
This is from the July 2018 interim report (pdf) from the House of Commons Home Affairs Committee which warns all those involved in the Brexit debate not to exploit or escalate tensions over immigration in the run up to withdrawal agreement.
The report recommends:
- Whilst they recognise the need for evidence from the Migration Advisory Committee to inform final decisions, they believe that public consultation on broad options is needed
- It is imperative that the debate about our future European Economic Area (EEA) migration policy does not see a resurgence of the polarisation that characterised some elements of the 2016 referendum campaigns
- Meeting the net migration target should not be an objective of EEA migration policy. It is not working and should be replaced
- The Government should not just look to immigration rules as it seeks to address public concerns over immigration. Regulation of the labour market, further measures to prevent exploitation, and increased funding for enforcement would benefit both domestic and migrant workers, subject to practical arrangements with business.