From a research study by the University of Birmingham we read evidence that the gut feeling many of us had about the treatment of migrants in Scotland being different from that elsewhere in the UK has some substance:
· Despite sharing the uncertainty over the outcome of the Brexit process, EU families in Scotland feel more welcome and safer than south of the border.
· The research points to three main factors that have contributed to this: a) The words of reassurance that came after the referendum from the Scottish government directly addressed to EU nationals; b) The victory of Remain which was taken as evidence of the majority of the population in Scotland being pro-European; and c) The positive messages on migration and the EU coming from the Scottish government.
· Feeling welcome and safe also contributes to some EU nationals’ perception of the Scottish identity as more inclusive and open to others than the English one.
· The 2014 Scottish Independence referendum stimulated a wide conversation around identity and belonging that involved also the EU nationals, who had the right the vote.
· Frustration, anxiety, and disappointment are shared for Brexit by all participants. However, not everyone is being and will be equally affected. Attention to class, ethnicity, age, life stage, and gender are essential for a more nuanced understanding not only of the impact of Brexit, but also of the resources and options available to families for mitigating this impact.
The full report with moving quotes like that above can be found at: