Poll Suggests Scots Don’t Want Immigrants to Have Free Public Services

by Ray Clancy on March 18, 2015

Scotland is thought to pride itself for welcoming expats from around the world but a new survey suggests they are not so keen on them accessing public services free.

Indeed, the majority of Scots believe incomers should have to wait some time before they can use public services, according to a poll for BBC Scotland.

flagSCOTLANDSome 55% think migrants should have to wait a year or more before they are allowed to use them and just 15% thought they should be allowed to use them as soon as they settled.

The poll also shows that 26% thought people coming to work and live in Scotland should have to wait a short period of a few months before accessing public services.

The findings suggest Scots are only slightly more supportive of the right of people from abroad using services than people across the UK as a whole. A similar poll carried out across the whole of Britain last year, using the same question, found that 59% thought migrants should have to wait a year to use services.

The services include those funded by the tax payer such as schools, the national health service and council services.

While 27% believe immigration is good for the country, only 5% want to see immigration increased and within the 64% who want it reduced, some 15% of want to see immigration stopped altogether. This is in contrast to politicians at Scotland’s Parliament who believe Scotland needs more skilled migrants.

It found that women in Scotland were more likely to want immigration cut with 69% agreeing with this view compared to 60% of men.

Older people were much more likely to be against immigration, with 76% of over 60s in favour of a reduction as opposed to 43% of 18 to 24 year olds.

Demographics suggest Scotland’s population is ageing and, despite immigration-driven population growth over the past decade, the political consensus in Holyrood is in favour of more migrants of working age coming in to take on jobs and set up businesses which can grow the economy.

Despite the rise over the past decade Scotland still has a small immigrant population relative to England, especially London.


{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

william March 30, 2015 at 12:59 pm

i havea british passport my fateher was Scottish and my mother South African.i AM 62 of age what are my chances of employment in the UK or Scotland.What type of benefits could ireceive whilst looking for employment which is of course my main objective


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