Colin Hines argues for an amendment of the treaty of Rome; Frances Peck says immigration is the lifeblood of society but must be at a responsible level; and Declan O’Neill says the Tory/DUP pact makes the Northern Ireland border issue even more fraught
What a relief to read the letters from Dick Taverne and others saying that Brexit should be fought rather than meekly accepted as inevitable (Letters, 19 June). However, I’m afraid that none of your correspondents mentioned the key change required before a “remain and reform” package has a cat’s chance in hell of succeeding in a second referendum. That is the need for the EU to amend the treaty of Rome to allow member states to decide how many people they want to come into their countries. The usual defeatist response to this is that the treaty of Rome’s four freedoms are somehow immutably writ in stone. Yet when researching the practicalities of a transition to a treaty of “home”, prioritising the protection and rediversification of European economies, I sited a range of EU leaders and institutions calling for a rethink of this issue.
Michael Heseltine has suggested that Macron and Merkel might team up to offer a deal on immigration such that the UK could stay in the EU. Were Labour to champion such an approach, it would appeal to voters by emphasising UK training programmes to eventually fill the jobs that might otherwise be taken by new EU migrants. But most importantly, the party should emphasise its belief in internationalism by bringing to an end the permanent theft of the brightest and the best from generally poorer countries whose taxpayers have paid for their education, but who are denied the benefits of it through migration.
East Twickenham, Middlesex