Young Citizens is an education charity working in primary and secondary schools to help educate, inspire and motivate the active citizens of tomorrow. Here they talk about their new resource, created with law firm Allen & Overy, on the topic of migration.
Headlines about the ‘immigration crisis’ continue to dominate the media. But do young people understand what this means in reality?
In 2017, 578,000 people migrated to the UK. Making it the 5th most popular place to emigrate to. During this time over 28,000 EU nationals applied to become British Citizens.
Last year alone the UK granted asylum to 15,000 people, 40% of whom were under the age of 18. However, 84% of the world’s refugees and asylum seekers are currently being hosted by low or middle income countries. 
Britain’s future depends on empowering the next generation to become active members of society. A strong, cohesive society can only continue to thrive if young people are equipped with the knowledge, skills and attitudes to make it happen. But they face serious challenges.
As communities become more and more diverse in many instances they have also become more polarised and informed debate often gives way to name-calling and abuse. The echo chambers of social media reinforce entrenched positions, leaving little room to consider other honestly held views.
‘Fake news’ erodes trust, and feeds prejudices.
However, when given the right tools young people certainly can tackle these problems head on.
Smartlaw is an initiative set up by Young Citizens. Our aim is that all young people will leave school fully understanding their legal rights and responsibilities. Through our range of high quality, tried and tested classroom resources we inspire young people to engage in the complex world of the law and provide them with the knowledge and skills they need to become legally capable. We have a range of other topics available to purchase, including: Social Media and the Law, Human Rights and Discrimination. For more information visit www.smartlaw.org.uk/resources
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