Controlled Migration Fund would help integration, says IPPR

2 Nov 15

The government has been urged to create a new Controlled Migration Fund to provide additional support to areas that have experienced high levels of migration and to prepare areas that may take in additional refugees.

The recommendation has been put forward by the Institute for Public Policy Research, which suggested that additional support would help integrate newly arrived communities and ease local tensions.

The think-tank also called for local authorities to be actively involved in creating citizenship tests to include information about community life and local activities, and hold widely advertised and public citizenship ceremonies.

The Controlling Migration Fund would help areas that have seen localised high migration in recent years. Councils could then use the funding to both pre-empt and alleviate pressure on public services, and could also be used to develop local Action Plans encourage community cohesion.

Publishing the Trajectory And Transience report today, Phoebe Griffith, IPPR associate director for migration, integration and communities said opinion polls consistently showed the majority of the public have fears about large unplanned immigration, leading to politicians responding with ever-tougher measures and rhetoric.
However, a new approach was now needed, she stated, which recognised the need to integrate migrants, rather than hoping the issue will go away.

“We think that national and local government, universities and established communities all have roles to play in making newly arrived immigrants feel at home and want to participate fully in local community life,” Griffiths said.

The IPPR report also urges universities to play an active role by helping support international students with applications and processes related to post-study visas. Overseas students should be encouraged to stay on in the local area by, for example, setting up programmes that match them with sectors of the local economy affected by skills shortages.

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