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We understand that some far right organisations are distributing leaflets and posters containing some very unpleasant messages of hate – these messages often claim to be patriotic or standing up for Britain and what it means to be British and British culture.  

Sometimes these groups make claims about migrants and refugees that just don’t stand up.   

This ‘fake news’ can make many of our friends and neighbours feel uncomfortable and unwelcome in our communities or even promote hate and violence.  Vulnerable people can be taken in by the claims and drawn into believing things that just aren’t true. 

We all want to be proud of our country, to value our heritage and our culture and to be able to enjoy and share that with our friends and neighbours.  This doesn’t mean we need to worry about someone else having a different background and culture to us. We want to know more about other cultures, we want them to be able to enjoy their values and traditions, to share them with us, and for them to share in ours. 

With all that is going on in the world right now we really don’t need these campaigns spreading hate, fear, and lots of misinformation.   

If you receive a leaflet like this, please let us know by emailing lctinfo@bristol.gov.uk    

We will report any information on leaflets like this to our colleagues in the PREVENT team – that’s a combination of the Police, Home Office and Counter Terrorism teams. 

White people a minority in London? 

London has always been a diverse melting pot like many capital cities across the world. However, there has indeed been a decline in the percentage of white people in London. Unlike the narrative described by extremists though, this hasn’t been caused by migrants moving in but white-Britons moving out.  

In the first decade of this century we saw a massive 620,000 white British people (nearly 1 and a half times the population of Bristol), moving out of the capital with many escaping to affluent countryside locations instead. [1

Migrants are breaking the NHS, damaging our economy! 

This is the biggest misconception around immigration. Despite all the evidence to the contrary, people still assume that migrants are a negative for economies when they are actually the opposite. Even in a country like the United States of America, whose economy was built by migrants, many struggle to understand the benefits [2]. 

Even ignoring the ethical reasons for allowing migrants into our country there are many pragmatic reasons to do so: 

Migrant households contribute on average over £4,000 per year to their country economy. [3

In the NHS a migrant is more likely to be treating you than ahead of you in the queue. The University of Oxford showed that areas with more immigration had lower waiting times. [4

Because Migrants tend to arrive in their younger years, they are less likely to be ill, and also more likely to be working. [5

But there are so many immigrants! 

Whilst there are higher levels of immigration due to wars and man-made climate change, we all have a tendency to overestimate the number of immigrants in the country. 

Humans are fantastic at noticing changes and differences in their environments and amongst the people in their locality. It is estimated that we typically assume the number of immigrants in the country is actually 3 times higher than it actually is. [6

This is not racism, this is simply noticing that there are shops selling food than you do not recognise or hearing snatches of foreign conversation as you walk to the shops. We simply do not notice the thousands of times we walk past the shops that have always been there or hear English spoken. It simply is not remarkable to see and hear ‘common’ things, and so our brains latch on to the new and the different. 

As Jo Cox, the Labour politician who was assassinated by right-wing extremists said: “we have more in common than that which divides us” 

If you need or have concerns please contact SARI or Bristol City Council