Newly arrived migrants from Eastern Europe should be taught how to wait in line and “be nice”, the British government’s integration tsar has said.
Dame Louise Casey told parliamentarians that too many migrants do not understand the “basics” of British life, citing how to queue and when to put rubbish out for collection as examples.
The senior civil servant published a major report on the integration of migrant communities last month in which she said “regressive religious and cultural ideologies” were taking root in Britain. She pointed out that some towns have “changed out of all recognition”, and that some Muslim communities, in particular, have fostered regressive, sexist, and harmful ideologies.
Speaking to the House of Commons’ Communities and Local Government Committee on Monday, however, she decided to focus on the problems of Eastern European migrants:
“I thought it was interesting that they said that nobody had talked to them about our way of life here, about when to put rubbish out,” she said.
“Nobody told them to queue, nobody told them to be nice, all those sorts of things. We hadn’t been on it and I think as part of the package that would be no bad thing.
“What is clear is we is that we ought to be more on integration, we should have been and we need to be.”
A report by Britain’s former equalities chief last year found “a chasm” opening between Muslims and non-Muslims on issues such as marriage, schooling, relations between men and women, and freedom of expression.
Trevor Phillips, former chief of the Equalities and Human Rights Commission, admitted: “Liberal opinion in Britain has, for more than two decades, maintained that most Muslims are just like everyone else… But thanks to the most detailed and comprehensive survey of British Muslim opinion yet conducted, we now know that just isn’t how it is.”
Dame Louise Casey acknowledged yesterday that it was easy to find new examples of “Trojan horse” schools – where Islamists infiltrated and took over secular schools – across Britain.
“We did not find it very difficult to find things like segregation of girls, what I would describe as anti-equal opportunities or anti-liberal values,” she said.
She also equated the threat of the “extreme right” to Islamism, saying it was easier for the government to tackle the former rather than the latter.
“The genuine fear in all of this is that we have two extremists alive in our communities – the extreme Right wing which is milking all of this for its worth,” she said.
“But we also have Islamist extremism at play. I have felt at points it has been easier to talk about one than it is to talk about the other.”