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Reading: Dunleavy CH 11 Unit 9: Immigration and Multiculturalism.

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Presentation on theme: "Reading: Dunleavy CH 11 Unit 9: Immigration and Multiculturalism."— Presentation transcript:

1 Reading: Dunleavy CH 11 Unit 9: Immigration and Multiculturalism

2 Guiding Questions What patterns can be observed in British immigration policy? How do we explain these patterns? What does integration look like in the British system? How is the debate over multiculturalism attempting to address problems of integration?

3 Patterns of Immigration Immigration policy has shifted back and forth between relative openness and restriction in the postwar era. Recent openness a result of: 1) economic boom 2) successful Hong Kong transfer policy 3) British demographic crunch (i.e. graying of society) Legal immigration has increased; but issues related to asylum and integration are coming to the forefront. Asylum applications are more difficult to explain than importing skilled labor. 9/11 and the current economic crisis has shifted the immigration debate towards restrictions rather than openness. Issues of integration pushed to the forefront.

4 Patterns of Immigration 1940’s-1962: Open immigration policy; colonial and Commonwealth immigration was relatively unrestricted. 1962: Commonwealth Immigrants Act limited immigration; required a voucher from Department of Labor to immigrate. 1965: Quota of 8,500 Commonwealth workers; those without specific jobs or skills needed were denied entry. 1968: Quotas placed on Asian and African migrants with British citizenship. 1971: Only those with direct connections with the UK could enter freely; work vouchers decoupled from residency.

5 Patterns of Immigration Layton-Henry 2004 Restrictions on commonwealth migration fostered new legislation which defined citizenship more tightly. Based on “birth, settlement, or descent” from a UK citizen. Pulled UK away from ties to Commonwealth. Thatcher: ushered in a new era of immigration restrictions aiming to reduce immigration to the UK. 1) Denied entrance to the UK on the basis of arranged marriage. 2) Required financial solvency to enter. 3) Attempted to restrict the number of refugees which entered the UK seeking asylum. 4) Revoked right to family reunification to those entering Britain prior to 1973. Major: Policy towards asylum seekers formed the lion’s share of immigration control policy.

6 Patterns of Immigration Blair: Sought to address asylum seekers backlog while reducing benefits to those who entered under false pretenses. Goal was to reduce the use of asylum applications for economic migration. Vouchers offered instead of cash. Raised questions over standards of living for asylum seekers during the application decision process. Law Lords/Bishops chastised government over treatment of asylum seekers. Policy has not reduced asylum applications. Blair/Brown actively attempted to promote immigration of skilled labor. Layton-Henry: “Two-thirds of immigrants come from ‘high-income’ countries, and some 60 percent enter professional or managerial professions” Current Lib-Con coalition: limit non-EU economic migrants.

7 Integration: Patterns British government has historically, taken a “hands off” approach on integration. Policy emphasizes responsibility of immigrants to assimilate. Arguably resulted in the creation of enclaves. Unemployment is higher amongst non- white migrant populations within the UK. Burnley riots in 2001 highlighted the need to address integration. July 2005 attacks, the issue of integration of Muslim migrants returned to the center of political debate.

8 Islamic Fundamentalism The issue of integration is frequently raised in response to Muslim immigrants. Islamophobia vs. Londonistan debate. 1988: Salman Rushdie’s The Satanic Verses caused an outrage; British Muslims lobbied to ban the book. 1989: Ayatollah Khomeini’s call to execute Rushdie split Muslim organizations in the UK. Conservatives: violence is unacceptable Labour: raised concerns about unfair blasphemy laws. Promote dialogue

9 Islamic Fundamentalism July 2005 attacks: assailants were born in Britain. Racially motivated attacks against Muslims renewed the debate on integration and tolerance within British society. Multiculturalism debate aims to increase government’s role in integration. Emphasizes integration over assimilation. Fears that old model of integration could foster further isolation and fundamentalist violence.

10 Multiculturalism AID INTEGRATION BY:RAISES NEW ISSUES: 1) Affirmative action (positive discrimination) to provide access to education, housing, access to services, etc. 2) Provide access to educational services that preserve language/culture of migrant population. 3) Protect rights to practice religion/observe religious holidays, etc. 4) Rescind unfair blasphemy laws and replace with laws outlawing religious hatred. 1) How should the government regulate Islamic schools? 2) Should the government ban ritual slaughters of animals? 3) What role should the government play in protecting the rights of women? 4) Should the monarchy and the privileged position of the Church of England be changed?

11 2006: Racial and Religious Hatred Act 9/11 and Danish cartoon controversy (2005) prompted a government response to prosecute religious hatred. Legislation was controversial. Initial legislation sought to criminalize any language that was seen as insulting or abusive. Seen as too broad by some religious groups, actors/comedians. Blair defeated twice in the Lords; forced to accept Lords changes. Section 29A Meaning of "religious hatred" In this Part "religious hatred" means hatred against a group of persons defined by reference to religious belief or lack of religious belief. Section 29B: (1) A person who uses threatening words or behaviour, or displays any written material which is threatening, is guilty of an offence if he intends thereby to stir up religious hatred. Lords removed prohibition against insulting language; language that could “possibly cause offense” protected. Lords amendment required that the speech be INTENDED to stir up religious hatred

12 Conclusions: Political Responses Left: retain support amongst minority groups while reducing tensions between native born and immigrant population. Labour: attempt to provide English language skills accepted; oath of nationality rejected. Liberal Democrats: provide a path to citizenship for migrants within the UK. Dropped this is coalition with the Conservatives. Right: struggle with centrality of national identity and multiculturalism. Conservatives have to balance opposition to immigration with appearing too extreme. Have shifted under Cameron, emphasizing what unites the British rather than what divides them. Far Right: advocate immigration controls to address integration difficulties. BNP: has successfully won seats from Labour in working class areas facing economic downturn

13 Next Unit Theme: Security Policy and 9/11 Readings: Dunleavy CH 10 and 12


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