In Brief

Five English councils to tackle segregation

Plan announced as Sajid Javid claims 770,000 people living in UK speak no English

Five English councils have laid out plans to to adopt new integration strategies to deal with segregation problems in their communities.

The programme, known as the Integrated Communities Strategy, is being backed by £50m of government funding, and includes measures to boost English language skills, along with school-based schemes to encourage pupils from a single ethnic or religious community to mix with children from other backgrounds. Women from minority communities will also be encouraged to find jobs.

Councils in Bradford, Blackburn, Peterborough, Walsall, and Waltham Forest in London have been selected for special help, the BBC reports.

The move is a response to the 2016 Casey Review, which warned social cohesion cannot be taken for granted in the multicultural UK. Integration tsar Dame Louise Casey told MPs that “too many migrants fail to understand the ‘basics’ of British life, including when to be ‘nice’ and when to put the rubbish out”, according to The Daily Telegraph.

Ahead of the publication of the plans, Communities Secretary Sajid Javid told The Guardian that around 770,000 people living in the UK speak little or no English.

“Just imagine the opportunities they have given up on, the inability they have to socially mix with others and really contribute to society,” Javid said, adding that his own mother’s decision to learn English 15 years after arriving in the country had “transformed her life”.

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