Blog: Challenging negative perceptions of immigration
The recent publication of Irish Human Rights and Equality Commission research into public attitudes towards immigration and immigrants
from different ethnic backgrounds has highlighted the extent to which the Government has ignored the need to build and foster an inclusive society.
The research shows how attitudes towards immigrants changed once the recession commenced. According to the Economic and Social Research Institute (ERSI), which carried out the research, public perceptions of immigration and immigrants were largely positive from 2002 to 2006.
This changed from 2008 onwards with perceptions being very negative in 2010 and then improving slowly as the economy recovered. This finding demonstrates a correlation between attitudes towards immigration and the state of the economy.
As the Irish economy continues to grow and with employment levels rising, attitudes to immigration appear to be more positive. But we should be deeply concerned that the research highlights differing attitudes towards immigration from specific racial and ethnic groups.
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