Divided Britain: The Sheffield school where migrants went from 5% to 95% in just a few years

A SCHOOL in Sheffield has gone from an immigrant population of less than five per cent to 95pc in just a few years, the author of a government-commissioned report revealed today.

Picture posed by models

Dame Louise Casey said the “misogyny and patriarchy” in some communities was widening inequality rather than healing it.

Dame Louise, who was brought in by David Cameron to report on social integration amid concerns that hundreds of radicalised young Britons were joining Islamic State, warned that the country was becoming more divided as it became more diverse.

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She said the UK could “no longer duck difficult issues” and highlighted the problems some areas had faced because of the pace and scale of immigration.

“I talk about the patterns of change in the population of the country and how the pace of immigration, in particular, in some areas has been too much,” she said.

“In Sheffield I didn’t find it difficult to find people really struggling with the vast numbers of people coming in from Eastern Europe and the Roma community. One school has gone from less than 5% non-UK nationals to 95% non-UK nationals within a few years.

“That type of change, the impact of immigration and other population changes has been huge and we haven’t been on an integration strategy.”

In her report she acknowledged that elements would be “hard to read”, particularly for Muslim communities which already felt under pressure, but she said the country had to face up to “uncomfortable” problems.

She told the BBC Radio 4 Today programme: “I, only last Thursday, was in a community where women who have lived here for years are not allowed out of their house without their men’s permission.”

She added: “Inequality within certain communities in these highly segregated areas is getting worse, not better.”

Dame Louise said she was “tired” of the debate around Muslim women wearing the veil, saying people should be allowed to dress how they wanted.

But she added: “Do I think police officers or midwives should be fully veiled? No, I don’t. I want to see their faces - most of us do.”

Dame Louise said: “At the end of the day it is not the women in those communities that I have a problem with, it is the men in those communities. It is the misogyny and the patriarchy that has to come to an end.

“Leaders that are not Muslim and are Muslim need to unite around unity in this country. No matter who you are, no matter what creed or colour you are, equality rules.”

Her review recommended that schoolchildren should be taught “British values” of tolerance, democracy and respect to help bind communities together amid growing “ethnic segregation”.

It highlighted the plight of women who found themselves marginalised through poor English language skills while being subjected to “coercive control, violence and criminal acts of abuse, often enacted in the name of cultural or religious values”.

In a wide-ranging set of recommendations, the review called for more English classes for isolated groups, greater mixing among young people through activities such as sport, and a new “oath of integration” enshrining British values for all holders of public office.

The review was originally commissioned by Mr Cameron in 2015, when he was prime minister, as part of a wider strategy to tackle the “poison” of Islamic extremism.

It found that while Britain has benefited hugely from immigration and the increased ethnic and religious diversity it had brought, there had not been sufficient emphasis on integration.

It called on the Government to back a new programme to strengthen cohesion through promotion of the English language, raising employment levels among the most marginalised groups and “emancipating” women trapped in social isolation.

It highlighted the “huge national, cultural and symbolic value” of British citizenship, urging the promotion of British laws, history and values within the core school curriculum to build “integration, tolerance, citizenship and resilience” in children.

For those coming to the UK seeking citizenship, it said the Government should consider requiring them to take an oath of integration with British values and society on arrival in the country rather that awaiting their final citizenship test.

Iqbal Bhana, who advises the Government on anti-Muslim hate crime, told Today that successive governments and local authorities had failed to act on the issues identified in the report, which had been known about for a long time.

“The communities also have a responsibility, but they cannot do this in isolation without some support from the government,” he said.

Mohammed Shafiq, chief executive of the Ramadhan Foundation condemned the report as “inflammatory, divisive, pandering to the agenda of the far right”.

“We are saddened that once again British Muslims have become a political football which is bashed from time to time without any regard for the impact this has on individuals who then are subjected to threats and violence,” he said.