Scapegoating.

Nigel Farage is once again in the news for controversy he caused by the comment he made on his own radio show where he claimed that Sweden was the “rape capital” of Europe and who did he blame for this? Of course, refugees and immigrants. Now if one thing you could bet on without a doubt, is that if Nigel Farage states a problem, it will always be the fault of the refugees or immigrants as a whole, because of course, no one else does anything bad, right?

Wrong. But not according to Farage, for he stated “ Pro-rata Sweden has taken more young male migrants than any other country in Europe, and there has been a dramatic rise in sexual crime in Sweden- so much so that Malmo is now the rape capital of Europe, and some argue, perhaps the rape capital of the world; and there is a Swedish media that frankly just doesn’t report it.” Farage is seen making wild accusations (later to be proved wrong) just to pinpoint another issue on the migrants.

We all know that Farage is not keen on immigration as a whole as he wants to make “Great Britain great again”, he is completely against the free movement of people as he blames the NHS crisis and the lack of housing and school places on immigrants, which of course if you read the newspapers, you may believe to be true.

However, for those of us who don’t believe everything we read, it is clearly evident to see that it is the austerity cuts that have been put in place by this government that have caused the NHS crisis, it is the government’s fault we do not have enough houses as they have not built enough over the years, it is the fault of the government that there are not enough school places as they cut funding for schools as a whole, so where are we meant to get more money to build schools from?

Yet it is always the migrants that get scapegoated and targeted by politicians, right wing political groups and the media. Why do people think this misconception of migrants is acceptable? If you ask many people who don’t agree with immigration, they will mention things such as “they drive down wages, they take jobs, they all claim benefits” etc. However, the truth is very different. Research has shown that there would need to be a 10% rise in the UK Population for there to be a decrease of 1% in wages.

In addition to this, migrants in the years 2000-2011 contributed £20 billion to the UK Economy. Furthermore, under 5% of EU migrants in the UK are claiming JSA (Job Seekers Allowance) and under 10 percent of EU migrants are claiming other working age benefits. Considering there is roughly 3million EU migrants in the country, under 350,000 are claiming benefits out of 3 million, which if you think about it, is a small number. EU immigrants contribute £463 per second in revenue for the UK, according to CITY A.M. article published in 2015.

Many studies have shown that immigrants are less likely to claim benefits than native Britons. Very small numbers of asylum seekers rely on state support. When they do, it’s because law prevents asylum seekers from being employed while their application for asylum is being processed. Also, many seem to believe that refugees who come from countries such as Syria and the surrounding areas, are rapists or terrorists, but this again is not the case.

refugeeThat claim was widely argued against by experts such as Philip Cohen, who is a sociologist at the University of Maryland. Cohen produced a graph showing rapes recorded by police per 100,000 population in Sweden compared to the country’s refugee population.

The graph showed us that rape figures began to increase after 2004, eight years before the refugee population started increasing in 2012.

In conclusion, the many misconceptions we see about migrants and refugees are not true and are often twisted to reach the criteria of the media. Do not believe all you read and all you see as this deadly misconception can lead to racism, discrimination and hate crime increasing.

 

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