16 Conclusions - Cross-Cutting Summary
16.1 This review has presented evidence about the diversity of experience for the various ethnic groups across a range of topic areas. Despite the limitations of the data in a number of these topic areas, there is some evidence of differences in outcomes and experiences between ethnic groups, and this is presented below. The reader should note that the reasons for these differences are less well understood. The conclusion begins by summarising the evidence that addresses ethnic minorities as a single group (the majority of the evidence reviewed). This is usually because sample sizes are too small to report for individual ethnic groups.
16.2 The proportion of ethnic minority students in Further Education is higher than their share of the population as a whole, and degrees are held by a greater proportion of the ethnic minority population than of the white population. However, ethnic minority students tend to graduate with lower-class degrees than white students and - despite variation between ethnic groups - employment rates are generally lower for ethnic minorities than white people. Negative pay gaps exist for most minority groups, who are about twice as likely to be in relative poverty than white people, and nearly three times more likely to be in in-work poverty. Ethnic minority workers in low-paid employment are expected to benefit from the introduction of the Universal Credit, but large families are likely to lose out from the Benefits Cap. Ethnic minorities are under-represented in the social rented housing sector, and are over-represented among the homeless and in Scotland's prison population. More positively, ethnic minority candidates have been successful in gaining public appointments. The number of reported racist incidents is increasing over time, and racial prejudice tends to be accompanied by intolerance of immigration and a lack of personal contact with people from different racial or ethnic backgrounds. The small amount of data available on social care, indicate limited access to formal social care by members of ethnic minorities. Barriers to participation in sports include actual or feared incidences of racism, the absence of other people from one's own community using the facilities, dress codes, and lack of privacy in changing areas.
16.3 White school pupils account for the majority of exclusions, and white students are the biggest ethnic group in the Scottish student population. In Higher Education, 18.5% of white students study creative arts and design, compared with 4.9% of black students and 4.6% of Asian students. Self-employment rates are very low for white Scottish people. Both white men and white women are more likely to be members of pension schemes than black Caribbeans and, particularly, Bangladeshis and Pakistanis. White British people have the lowest overall well-being, the worst teeth, and eat less fruit and vegetables than the average.
16.4 Black pupils do worse than white pupils at school. In Higher Education, 20.3% of black students study engineering and technology, compared with approximately 10% of students of other ethnicities. Unemployment rates are higher for all visible ethnic minority groups in comparison to white Scottish, and for some groups (including people of African and black Scottish origin) are twice as high. Self-employment rates are very low for Caribbean and African people, and large pay gaps exist for black Africans. Owner occupation of housing is lower than white Scottish for black people, who are more likely than the average to register as homeless. African households are the least likely ethnic group to have access to a car. Africans have better teeth, less heart disease and lower alcohol consumption than the average. Very high proportions of black Africans use libraries, and the lowest use is among black Caribbean people; barriers included concerns about feeling uncomfortable or out of place.
16.5 On average, Chinese pupils perform better than white pupils. School leavers who identify as Chinese consistently have the highest proportion in positive post-school destinations. In the Scottish student population, Chinese are one of the biggest ethnic groups after white students. Chinese workers are much more likely to work for small organisations than white people, and self-employment is high for the Chinese. Chinese people are less likely than the average to register as homeless, and Chinese households are very likely to have access to a car. The Chinese have comparatively low incidence of mental ill-health, overweight and cardio-vascular disease.
16.6 Indian school pupils tend to perform better than white pupils. In the Scottish student population, Indians are one of the biggest ethnic groups after white students. In Higher Education, more than half of all Asian students study business and administrative studies, and self-employment is high for Indian groups. Compared with white British men, Indians have a slightly positive (but not statistically significant) pay gap. Owner occupation of housing is higher for Indians than white Scottish, but Indians were also over-represented in homeless applications in Scotland. Indian households are very likely to have access to a car, but sports participation rates among Indian women are very low compared to the other ethnic groups.
16.7 Bangladeshi pupils generally perform better than white pupils, but employment rates are particularly low among Bangladeshis. Bangladeshi workers are much more likely to work for small organisations than white people, and they also experience large pay gaps and have quite high rates of self-employment. Overcrowding is common among Bangladeshi households, and they were over-represented in homeless applications in Scotland. Sports participation rates among Bangladeshi women are very low compared to the other ethnic groups. Comparatively high proportions of Bangladeshi respondents visit libraries, and barriers to cultural engagement include concerns about feeling uncomfortable or out of place.
16.8 Employment rates are particularly low among Pakistanis, with unemployment rates of 12% compared to 7% for white Scottish. Pakistani workers are much more likely to work for small organisations than white workers, and self-employment is high for Pakistanis. Large pay gaps exist for Pakistanis, who earn almost one-quarter less than white British men. Owner occupation of housing is higher than white Scottish for Pakistanis, but overcrowding is common among Pakistani households who were also over-represented in homeless applications in Scotland. Pakistani households are very likely to have access to a car. Pakistanis drink and smoke less than average, but have a higher incidence of diabetes and rate their own health poorly. Lower than average participation rates in sport are found among Pakistani women. Comparatively high proportions of Pakistani respondents use libraries, and reported barriers to culture included concerns about feeling uncomfortable or out of place.
16.9 Employment rates are high among A8 migrants, who also commonly experience overcrowding.
16.10 Gypsy/Traveller children have low attendance rates at school, below-average academic performance, and above-average exclusion rates. Gypsies/Travellers are reported to experience high rates of unemployment and discrimination, and anecdotal evidence indicates that few unemployment programmes have been tailored to the needs of Gypsies/Travellers. The limited evidence on Gypsy/Traveller employment practices indicates a strong preference for male self-employment.
16.11 Refugee children frequently miss out on pre-school education, and consequently struggle in primary school. It is thought that refugees and asylum seekers might benefit from employability support, and greater recognition of their existing qualifications. Overcrowding is common among refugees, and surveys suggest that disabled refugees and asylum seekers rarely receive formal support from external agencies.
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