Iain Dale's row with furious caller over "disgusting" immigration bill

18 May 2020, 21:19

By Fiona Jones

Iain Dale had a row with a furious caller who branded the immigration bill "disgusting."

The caller Chris said, "Why today the government ran through an immigration bill which will make it impossible to bring in hospital porters and care workers, the people that are keeping our country going, I find that disgusting. Especially when you look at the way Boris Johnson was treated by two overseas nationals.

"How many hospital porters earn over £25,000?"

Iain said this will not be the case, "If in any sector there is a shortage, then they revise the points like in Australia."

Chris asked why the government would do this during a crisis.

"Secondly, why are we continuing to charge NHS professionals hundreds of pounds a year in additional tax just because they're born abroad? Frankly I find that a slap in the face," he said.

Priti Patel proposed a new immigration bill today in Parliament
Priti Patel proposed a new immigration bill today in Parliament. Picture: LBC/PA

"Don't be so ridiculous, you're using emotive language," Iain said, "it happens in every single country around the world, you have to pay to use a health system."

He said the NHS "desperately" needs 30,000 extra nurses and there should be no reason to dissuade immigrants from coming to work in the UK - he added that once people from overseas begin work they will be paying tax anyway.

He said he could not fathom imposing a health charge upon people who would be coming here to work for the health service.

Iain countered that the French and German health services also lack health workers so "we are not alone in this."

"The longterm solution is to train them in this country," Iain said.