Newspaper headlines scream that we are in the middle of an asylum crisis. Britain is being swamped by asylum seekers turning up on our shores in little dinghies. This, we are told, is something the public wont put up with.
Perhaps it is time for a reality check. Compared to the experience of countries on the border with conflict zones such as in Eastern Europe, most parts of the country and most people are not experiencing a crisis.
Even those of us who have contact with asylum speakers are in most cases unlikely to come into contact with those who arrived in dinghies. In fact, when I speak to others engaging with refugees we discover that no two contexts are alike. One if my friends has primarily spent time with asylum seekers who claimed refugee status on arrival because of religious persecution. That was much rarer for us in Bearwood.
The reality is that very few people will have first hand experience of negative issues arising from asylum seekers coming. Most people will only really encounter asylum seekers through the second hand reports and claims they read in the tabloids
Let’s be clear about this. If there is a migrant crisis, it is one that exists in the media headlines and in the speeches of politicians struggling to make headway in thee polls.
The simplest way to end the so called crisis is for certain people and papers to drop the extreme rhetoric. I suspect it isn’t in their interest to do so.