Speaking for Ourselves

Nazek Ramadan and member Latanya interviewed on BBC Radio London

Nazek Ramadan and member Latanya interviewed on BBC Radio London


 Migrant Voice -
 Migrant Voice - Nazek Ramadan and member Latanya interviewed on BBC Radio London

On International Migrants Day 2018 (18 December) Migrant Voice was invited to take part in a discussion on Eddie Nestor's drivetime programme on BBC Radio London. Our director Nazek Ramadan spoke about our #migrantfriend campaign for Migrants Day, when we celebrated the friendships created due to migration, and engaged with Eddie Nestor in a conversation about the pros and cons of immigration.

Latanya, a member from the West Midlands, who is originally from Jamaica, then spoke with Eddie about her experience of coming to the UK as a young girl and how she views more recent arrivals of migrants.

Asked why there is a disconnect between the facts - that migrants contribute more to the economy than they take out - and the common perception that migrants are "scroungers", Nazek said: 

"The media and politicians have been scapegoating migrants for a long time and they’ve gone unchallenged and that’s why an organisation like ours is there to challenge this negative perception, blaming us for all the problems.

"We’re contributing to the NHS, we’re building the country, we’re building homes, we’re supporting people, we’re caring for your elderly, we’re serving you in hotels and in the hospitality industry, we’re planting your fruit and vegetables, we’re an integral part of the community. We just get bad publicity and whenever convenient, politicians will blame us for problems we’re not responsible for.”

Eddie first asked Latanya about her experience of being a migrant in the UK and then how she saw the arrival of eastern European migrants in the mid-2000s.

“I viewed it as beautiful," she said, "but around me, society tried to exclude them. Now, I like justice so I have to let them know that what they’re doing is completely wrong. We’re all human at the end of the day.”

Latanya argued that "lack of knowledge" is the main reason why some British people have turned against immigrants.

“Personally I think if they go back and they check their history books, they will see that Great Britain was not Great Britain without migrants."

Listen to the full interviews here (47:30-58:45).