Monthly Archives: September 2007

Foreign babies?

In the news the other week: 25% of babies born in the UK have at least one foreign parent (http://politics.guardian.co.uk/homeaffairs/story/0,,2156006,00.html). I love this, because it looks so simple but in reality there’s loads going on.

Migration Watch said:

‘News today that one in four children born in Britain has a foreign parent is clearest possible evidence of the effect of mass immigration on our society. Many people simply don’t understand how this could have happened without anyone being consulted’

Mmm… now ‘foreign parent’ should read as ‘foreign-born parent’ because that’s what the data covered. And this covers a wide range of situations. It includes people born to British parents while overseas (perhaps while in diplomatic service, the forces, or in business): in 2001 a quarter of the ‘foreign-born people’ in the UK had at least one parent who was born here. It also includes the stereotypical Thai bride and other partners that we Brits meet when on holiday.

And there are also those people who are here because of work, and won’t be staying long. One of my favourite statistics relates to a place called Forest Heath in Suffolk. In this report it stood out because 47% of children are born to foreign-born parents. I spotted the place a few years ago because it has really high numbers of ‘White other’. ‘Are they Poles here to do agricultural work?’, you ask. If you know the area, you’ll know why. It’s Mildenhall and Lakenheath, two outposts of the USA. They’re airbases from which the US can strike at middle East/eastern European targets. Full of Americans in their family stage. Are these the immigrants Migration Watch are talking about?

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Filed under News, Statistics and simplicity