COUNCIL INQUIRY: Councillors offer their suggestions on immigration issues

SUGGESTIONS from other authorities about how they have dealt with issues similar to those in Boston and how they could be applied were discussed at the recent council inquiry meeting.

The ideas were brought up during a task and finish group date last week when members of local authorities elsewhere in Lincolnshire were quizzed on their experiences.

l Lincoln City Council’s Coun Brent Charlesworth said they had more issues with young students in HMOs and they often used the university as a central contact for any problems.

He also said the city had a long-established neighbourhood programme across three areas of the city which helped put together neighbourhood plans looking at how to develop the area.

l South Holland district councillor Nick Worth said the district’s migrant community had grown significantly as migrants had settled in Boston and their families had moved to Spalding and Holbeach.

As a result the district council held migrant forums and cultural events to try to connect with the community. These included food and pumpkin festivals.

l West Lindsey District Councillor Paul Howitt-Cowan also suggested approaching churches, especially Roman Catholic, and said it was surprising how much effect they had on their migrant community.

l Boston councillor Mike Gilbert said the council was looking into changing licensing within the borough and look at applying for by-laws. He said people should lobby Westminster and the European Union.

l The suggestion of creating a ‘migrant school’ was shot down by several councillors who said they believed it could make the situation worse.

MP Mark Simmonds will be questioned at the next inquiry meeting, which takes place today at 3.30pm.