SURVEY: Many school children believed immigrants were 'stealing British jobs'
School children have misconceptions about the number of immigrants living in England and negative views on Muslims, a survey has found.
A study involving 6,000 children found that many had a distorted view of Britain’s population, negative attitudes about Muslims, and despair about their own future opportunities.
The largest of its kind to be carried out in the UK, the survey found that 60 per cent of the children who took part expressed the view that “asylum seekers and immigrants are stealing our jobs”.
The research was carried out by the charity Show Racism the Red Card (SRTRC) also found 35 per cent agreed or partly agreed that “Muslims are taking over our country”.
Ged Grebby, chief executive of SRTRC, which based the study on questionnaires sent to more than 60 schools around the country from 2012 to 2014, said: “There is a large amount of negativity when young people are asked about immigration or Muslims. This survey shows this is fuelled by a totally distorted view of the number of immigrants and Muslims living in the UK.”
Dr Paul Jackson from the University of Northampton, who worked on the research project with SRTRC, said: “There is clearly a gap between the reality and perception on issues like the number of immigrants or the size of the UK’s Muslim community among some young people. The subsequent levels of hostility towards these groups is very worrying and is something that we, as a society, need to take seriously.”