Publication - Research and analysis

Young people's attitudes to immigration: findings from the Young People in Scotland Survey 2017

Published: 15 Aug 2018

This report presents findings on attitudes to immigration from the Ipsos MORI Young People in Scotland Survey 2017.

Young people's attitudes to immigration: findings from the Young People in Scotland Survey 2017
2. Perceived impact of immigration on the country as a whole

2. Perceived impact of immigration on the country as a whole

The young people who participated in the survey were asked whether they thought that, overall, immigration over the last few years has been good or bad for Scotland, or whether it has made no difference.

The highest proportion of respondents across the sample (40%) thought that immigration has been both good and bad for Scotland. An additional 16% felt that immigration has been mostly good for the country, while 15% felt it has been mostly bad. 11% thought that it has made no difference to Scotland. Almost one in five young people either said they didn't know, or that they preferred not to say, in response to the question (Figure 2.1).

Figure 2.1: 'Thinking about the last few years, overall, do you think that immigration has been good or bad for Scotland, or has it made no difference?' (N=1,781)

Figure 2.1: 'Thinking about the last few years, overall, do you think that immigration has been good or bad for Scotland, or has it made no difference?' (N=1,781)

Source: Young People in Scotland Survey 2017, Ipsos MORI.

Variations in attitudes between sub-groups

Year group

The older the respondents were, the more likely they were to think that immigration has been good for Scotland, and the less likely they were to say they 'didn't know' (Figure 2.2). The differences between people in S6 (the oldest year group) and other year groups were statistically significant.

Figure 2.2: 'Thinking about the last few years, overall, do you think that immigration has been good or bad for Scotland, or has it made no difference?' By year group (N=1,755)

Figure 2.2: 'Thinking about the last few years, overall, do you think that immigration has been good or bad for Scotland, or has it made no difference?' By year group (N=1,755)

Source: Young People in Scotland Survey 2017, Ipsos MORI.

Gender

Girls were more likely than boys to think that immigration has been both good and bad for Scotland (45% of girls took this view, compared with 37% of boys). Boys were more likely than girls to believe that the impact of immigration has been mostly bad (18% of boys selected this response, compared with 12% of girls) (Figure 2.3).

Figure 2.3: 'Thinking about the last few years, overall, do you think that immigration has been good or bad for Scotland, or has it made no difference?' By gender (N=1,715)

Figure 2.3: 'Thinking about the last few years, overall, do you think that immigration has been good or bad for Scotland, or has it made no difference?' By gender (N=1,715)

Source: Young People in Scotland Survey 2017, Ipsos MORI.

Socio-economic background

Young people in the least socio-economically deprived group ( SIMD 5) were more likely to believe that immigration has been mostly good for Scotland, compared with the most deprived group ( SIMD 1) (Figure 2.4).

Figure 2.4: 'Thinking about the last few years, overall, do you think that immigration has been good or bad for Scotland, or has it made no difference?' By SIMD (N=1,781)

Figure 2.4: 'Thinking about the last few years, overall, do you think that immigration has been good or bad for Scotland, or has it made no difference?' By SIMD (N=1,781)

Source: Young People in Scotland Survey 2017, Ipsos MORI.

Ethnicity

Young people from BME groups were more likely than White respondents to say that they did not know if immigration has been good or bad for Scotland (Figure 2.5). This was the only significant difference between White and BME groups in relation to this question.

Figure 2.5: 'Thinking about the last few years, overall, do you think that immigration has been good or bad for Scotland, or has it made no difference?' By ethnicity (N=1,672)

Figure 2.5: 'Thinking about the last few years, overall, do you think that immigration has been good or bad for Scotland, or has it made no difference?' By ethnicity (N=1,672)

Source: Young People in Scotland Survey 2017, Ipsos MORI.

Religious affiliation

Those who identified as non-Christians were less likely to think that immigration has been both good and bad for Scotland than either Christians or those who said they had no religion. 29% of non-Christians took this view, compared with 46% of Christians and 42% of those with no religious affiliation.

There were no differences in attitudes to the impact of immigration on Scotland between people who identified as Christian and those who said they had no religion (Figure 2.6).

Figure 2.6: 'Thinking about the last few years, overall, do you think that immigration has been good or bad for Scotland, or has it made no difference?' By religious affiliation (N=1,540)

Figure 2.6: 'Thinking about the last few years, overall, do you think that immigration has been good or bad for Scotland, or has it made no difference?' By religious affiliation (N=1,540)

Source: Young People in Scotland Survey 2017, Ipsos MORI.

Physical/mental health condition

Young people who said they had a physical or mental health condition were more likely than those who did not have such a condition to believe that immigration has been mostly bad for Scotland (21% of those with a health condition took this view, compared with 15% of young people with no health condition) (Figure 2.7).

Figure 2.7: 'Thinking about the last few years, overall, do you think that immigration has been good or bad for Scotland, or has it made no difference?' By physical/mental health condition (N=1,412)

Figure 2.7: 'Thinking about the last few years, overall, do you think that immigration has been good or bad for Scotland, or has it made no difference?' By physical/mental health condition (N=1,412)

Source: Young People in Scotland Survey 2017, Ipsos MORI.


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