"We have got areas in Salford where private landlords are letting properties with 10 and 12 people in there. Now the community doesn't object to the people, they object to the exploitation and the fact that that leads to people being on the street drinking, anti-social behaviour. They don't object to the people being there, but they object if they are undercutting wages and not getting the national minimum wage and they are not abiding by health and safety, so you have got to enforce the law."
Simon Woolley, director of Operation Black Vote, accused Ms Blears of pandering to far-right rhetoric. "There is absolutely no evidence migrant workers are drinking on the street and most people would accept migrant workers are doing a good job for a fair price."
Norman Lamb, a Liberal Democrat MP, said: "To paint this sort of picture plays to dangerous and wholly wrong stereotypes."