Long-term concerted effort needed to bring about integration in British society


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The Henry Jackson Society today commented on the release of the Government’s Green Paper on social integration, saying that Ministers have only just begun to address a problem which will require a concerted effort over decades to resolve.

Many of the Government’s proposals have previously been called for by Henry Jackson Society research. These include:

• Supporting teachers to promote British values across the curriculum. Our research finds that specialist training and high-quality resources are needed to promote British values by teachers.

• Greater relationship building with Ofsted. Our research suggested that Ofsted inspections need to be reviewed to ensure that they are robust enough to meet current challenges on spotting and combatting extremism in schools.

• Ensuring a high standard of safeguarding in all education settings. Unregistered schools are a blank spot in safeguarding, as are independent faith schools, which can be highly segregated. Our research has promoted increases safeguarding in all education settings – including activities such as clubs.

• Our seminal report Islamist Terrorism found that individuals who committed Islamist Related Offences (IROs) were more likely than the national average of Muslim to be living in neighbourhoods where the Muslim proportion of the population was 20% or above.

• Based on the official measure of relative deprivation in England, almost half of IROs were committed by individuals living in the most deprived 20% of neighbourhoods nationally, commonly referred to as the ‘highly deprived’.

• Therefore, we welcome the Government’s efforts to reduce social isolation and promote integration, and encourage it to consider recommendations put forward in the 2016 Casey Review on integration.

Responding to the Green Paper, Nikita Malik, Director of the Centre for the Response to Radicalisation and Terrorism at the Henry Jackson Society, said:

“Our previous research illustrates that social cohesion continues to be a serious issue in British society, and one that must be addressed through long-term proposals and initiatives. While this green paper represents an important first step, the Government must accept that isolation and deprivation are key enablers in the journey to radicalisation and violent extremism. Socially conservative practices and attitudes remain a challenge to the liberal and pluralistic society that forms the backbone of Britain. These must be tackled through systematic, sustainable, and transparent strategies, including opportunity building initiatives such as English language training.”


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