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 Jim Cunningham Jim Cunningham Labour, Coventry South 4:29 pm, 24th October 2017

The right hon. Lady is quite right; her constituency is near mine, so she will know that in general terms the west midlands has been valuable in terms of integrating people. She will also know that Coventry, for example, has a very good reputation for integration. People of all different nationalities have settled there over the years—I think there are about 50-odd different languages spoken—so that dimension of the problem is clear. The other important factor is that we have never allowed a ghetto system to develop in the west midlands. If we isolate people out of fear, the danger is that they congregate together, but do not actually integrate into the community. They need the language as a common denominator to do that.