English Language Teaching: Refugees

Part of the debate – in Westminster Hall at 4:29 pm on 24th October 2017.

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Photo of Caroline Spelman Caroline Spelman The Second Church Estates Commissioner 4:29 pm, 24th October 2017

The hon. Gentleman is right about that. Our constituencies are cheek by jowl. Sadly, in some situations in my surgeries I have been quite disturbed by what young children are hearing or having to explain to adults. Parents who do not speak English are in a painfully difficult position if they cannot get the help that they need and find someone to interpret for them. That is the situation that we want to address today.

At this moment in our history, encouraging greater community cohesion could hardly be more important. The recent European referendum caused quite a lot of community tension and has left many people feeling more separated from those around them. Following the vote, reports of hate crime and racist abuse dramatically increased. For many, the prevailing narrative of the last year has been one of division and discord, regrettably. Now the Government must ensure that the UK becomes a more inclusive, tolerant and united country in which to live.