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Ethnic diversity growing in Scotland

A STUDY has revealed growing ethnic diversity in Scotland just two days after the election of the country’s first anti-immigrant Ukip MEP.

University of Glasgow researchers found through a breakdown of recent census results that ethnic diversity is creating a “mosaic” of Scottish society.

The team behind the Centre on the Dynamics of Ethnicity, working with the University of Manchester, found that those in the 2011 census who described themselves as other than “White Scottish” accounted for 16 per cent of households across the region.

Those identifying as “White — other British” remained the largest minority group at 417,000, with around three-quarters originating in England.

But African, Chinese, Pakistani and Indian populations had also seen “considerable” increases.

Senior lecturer in sociology Dr Andrew Smith said the study revealed not just growing diversity in a statistical sense, but “diversity spread across different areas of the country.”

He said: “The presence of the large ‘other British’ minority reminds us that ethnicity is not a matter of colour, but might be used to describe different aspects of our background and sense of who we are.

“What the analysis also reveals is that Scotland’s growing diversity is not producing ‘polarised islands of different groups’ but a ‘mosaic of differently mixed areas.”

Anti-racist organisation Hope Not Hate Scotland organiser Rab O’Donnell warned that settled migrants or descendants of migrants were not necessarily “cool with immigration.”

But it was to be hoped that the normalisation of ethnic diversity would erode support for far-right groups such as the Scottish Defence League, the BNP and Ukip, he said.


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