There’s a popular perception about the UK these days that it is not a very migrant friendly nation, especially after Brexit, and the incumbent British Premier’s open hostility against the migrants and restricting their inflow.
Certain other not-too-positive developments and immigration rules support the view. Post Brexit and these developments, the UK certainly might not always seem like a very good and friendly place for migrants or the supporters of migration. It is also true that not a single day passes when some new tales of suffering and discrimination handed out to migrants, by a heartless administration, surface.
It is also a fact that the demands for more curbs on migration have upset politics for a generation, ending in the vote to exit a European Union (EU) that several voters had come to view as one of the main reasons for the migration woes.
Still much surprisingly and positively Brexit Britain is also a nation where the common man is presently more positive about migration, in the wake of the largest continued inflow of migrants in the recorded of the country, vis-à-vis what it was when the change started.
Now the UK is a nation where public anger against the unfair treatment of the long-settled migrants by the administration has just, reportedly, pressurized a home secretary to step down.
The conservative perception in numerous liberal circles holds that the UK has turned in on itself, inspired largely by a Leave victory that has justified bigotry and prejudice. Still, the public opinion indication constantly divulges the opposite; the local British people are more comfortable with migration than before a tendency that Brexit has stimulated and not upturned as widely believed.
Not more than 25% of the survey respondents, reportedly, viewed migration as good for the national economy in 2002, prior to the admission of the new EU members produced an outpouring in European Migration.
By 2014, with support for the UKIP at its top, the figure had jumped to 40%. It has jumped further since. More local residents also, reportedly, think of migration as elevating British culture now, post two decades of extraordinary migration inflows, than felt this way in the early 2000s, when the present flood of migration was just starting.
At present, the common man is also less expected to term migration as a political priority. This “salience” measure, allegedly, is a powerful forecaster of the voter activities.
For over 15 years, between 25% and 50% of the poll respondents have, reportedly, impulsively called immigration as among their topmost political worries. Still, since Brexit, complaints made to researchers, related to immigration, have shrunken. Over 40% of the respondents, reportedly, called it as an important matter in the run-up to Brexit. That number has decreased since even as presently it stands at less than 20%, a 15-year low.
Allegedly, this reduction in anxiety about migration is rather mystifying, given there has hardly been any major improvements or amendments in the migration strategy since Brexit, and despite the fact that the levels of migration have headed south, the drop has been somewhat not too remarkable.
Maybe, it is just as astounding, in the backdrop of the traditional knowledge that the local British people are essentially unreceptive to immigration, and Brexit has worsened it, that positive opinions, related to the impacts of migration, are gradually heading north an increase which Brexit has not overturned but fast-tracked.
The role of fairness provides one possible resolution to this enigma. Actually, the local British people, by and large, are basically not unfriendly to migrants, or unaware of the gains migration may generate. Still, they do have a basic sense of what a nondiscriminatory arrangement looks like even as they react extremely strongly against anything that goes against that equality nature.
The most powerful anti-migration media stories have allegedly strengthened this fairness character against migrants.
During the early 2000s, behind the public outrage was a conviction that the maximum number of asylum seekers was dishonest refugees; they were nothing but economic migrants abusing British bigheartedness. Later, the attention shifted to the UK’s welfare structure with regular tales of migrants moving to the UK to claim large benefits without paying for it.
The opinion that the extension of the EU free movement laws disrupted fairness principles, via giving rights, minus attaching responsibilities, could, likewise, be one factor in the recent disapproval of the EU migration, and the conviction that the Brexit vote has made the public desire for rules and order clear to politicians may be one cause for the latest sharp decrease in the fears related to migration.
The biggest migration stories since Brexit have bolstered the fairness instinct in the opposite direction. It was initially seen with the discussion over the rights of the citizens of the EU. Just months after a conflict-ridden referendum in which the EU migrants had featured prominently, voting, reportedly, showed vast public support for an immediate assurance of complete rights for all EU migrant residents in the UK. Rudimentary values of justice and equality, allegedly, led people to this generous conclusion.
The common man understood that those, who had come and developed lives in the UK with an expectation that they would be able to stay for as long as they desired, should have that expectation respected by administration. The fairness instinct was also behind the enraged public reaction to the Windrush episode.
Those who moved to the nation as kids, on the British passports, had a clear and acceptable claim to just & equal treatment from the only nation they had ever been familiar with. Their treatment as petty intruders and criminals was a blatant infringement of these elementary principles.
Windrush disclosed to politicians that the local people will not tolerate and turn the heat on an administration they believe isn’t following the laws with just as much anger as they turn on an allegedly calculating asylum seeker or welfare applicant.
The generous shift in public attitude has come along with an upsurge of opposition to the unjust treatment of the settled migrants at precisely the moment when a new home secretary, Sajid Javid who himself is a child of migrants reportedly, sets out to develop a post-Brexit migration structure. Allegedly, it’s a good opportunity for the champions of migration to establish principles of openness & justice.
Economic, Cultural Gains of Migration
Gradually growing acknowledgment of the economic & cultural gains of migration makes the case for opening the doors of the country to the world’s best and brightest students and manpower stronger. The public demand for fair treatment of the established migrants may be directed into new plans to establish their social & political rights.
Migration supporters would also do well to urge for reductions in the exorbitant charges slapped on migrants seeking to settle their position & rights with the reason being just treatment ought to be a matter of right, not means.
Allegedly, the Windrush episode has revealed that a migration arrangement that has infringed the elementary values of justice is not acceptable anymore.