UKIP is not a racist party

UKIP leader Nigel Farage

UKIP leader Nigel Farage

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As a member of UKIP who stood as a candidate in the 2014 local elections, I was appalled and horrified by the programme which aired on Channel 4 recently.

My horror came as the story gave the impression of a UKIP government as being more Big Brother than George Orwell’s vision. This could hardly be further from the truth. UKIP does want to introduce stricter border controls to bring immigration down to a more manageable level, but they are in no way advocating the type of radical clearing out of immigrants depicted in this badly-flawed work of fiction.

It was portrayed on screen that heavy-handed mobs of loutish ex-servicemen would suddenly be employed specifically to go around in riot gear rousting out illegal immigrants for immediate deportation. What utter rot! UKIP policy is that we need restrictions put in place to stop the current free-for-all mass migration, but the party in no way advocates wholesale deportations for the sake of it. The policy on a military covenant is also quite clear, in that ex-servicemen with at least 12 years service be guaranteed employment in the Police, Border Force or HM Prison Service, but this was not properly presented in this dreadful drama.

What was most alarming about this sneering, metropolitan focused portrayal of a UKIP government was the suggestion of draconian control and intrusion into personal lives that in no way reflects UKIP core values. Ours is a libertarian party, which means we respect the quintessential British need for privacy in everyday life. One of the things that makes this country great is the diversity of cultural backgrounds of British citizens and the tolerance we have for one another. This is a core value that UKIP holds dear.

The programme was alarmist, biased and frankly out of step with the reality of the situation here in Pendle. UKIP is not now, nor ever was, a racist party. We simply wish to address the concerns local citizens have about the influx of cheap labour from other EU countries, which only serves to depress wages and conditions for all local people.

The coming General Election looks set to be the most important in the past 50 years. Voting for UKIP’s Mick Waddington will be a declaration you really do want things to change for the better.

Tony Leather

Charles Street, Nelson