This is still about us
British ethnic minorities differing views on immigration and Europe explored in a new report by the Runnymede Trust.
Key findings are that BME people:
- Feel more positive about immigration than the general population;
- Are more likely to feel that the public debate around immigration negatively impacts on them personally, even if they or their parents were born in Britain;
- As a result BME citizens feel they sometimes need to ‘prove’ they are British;
- Broadly share concerns of the wider population around the pace of immigration, but their concerns are more focussed on pressure to services and less on cultural impact;
- Are more ambivalent about Europe and are less likely to take advantage of free movement within EU borders;
- Were more concerned about Britain being a 'hostile environment' for immigrants, including the Home Office 'Go Home' vans;
- Welfare benefits: BME people are more likely to be concerned about the impact of benefit cuts on immigrant families;
- Schools: BME people are more likely to be concerned that their British-born children have less rights to access public services;
- Citizenship and immigration system: BME people are more likely to be concerned about the cost of the citizenship process, family visa policies and Home Office responses to immigration queries;
- Variations between different BME groups: Long-settled communities were more likely to believe newer migrants had easier experiences;
- Europe: BME people are more likely to view Europe in explicitly ethnic or racial terms, identifying ‘Fortress Europe’ as a way of keeping out non-white immigrants while allowing significant levels of European migration.