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Date Wed 27 December 2006

Booklet adds to anti-racist arguments for public service staff

UNISON, Scotland's public service union, today, announced the publication of a new booklet that address the myths and inaccuracies about immigration and asylum commonly held by people in Scotland. The booklet, titled The Asylum Myths, is targeted at public service workers and deals not only with the 'myths' but also identifies far-right organisations that try to promote inaccurate information about migrants to further their own racist ideologies.

The publication is part of the union's 'Opposing Racism' action plan. Dave Watson, UNISON's Scottish Organiser said "This booklet attempts to address the racist lies of the BNP and other far-right parties head-on. We want our members to know the facts about immigration, and the positive benefits it can have for Scotland. "UNISON is challenging these lies and telling the truth about the valuable contribution that Scotland's diverse communities make to Scotland as a whole. This booklet forms part of UNISON's ongoing campaign. It contains valuable information that will support members in their work, and will challenge the lies."

The booklet addresses the common misconceptions about immigration, including "We're full up, we can't take any more", "They're taking our jobs", and "They're a drain on taxes", and points out the true situation (for example that without migrant workers, taxes would have to rise by 1p in the pound - according to the Home Office).

It is now being sent out to UNISONScotland's 80 plus branches and used to challenge attitudes and misinformation that might come up in the workplace and the wider community. UNISON has also sent the booklet to every MP in Scotland, along with our 129 MSPs.


[Note for Editors - The Asylum Myths and its accompanying leaflet are available from Kevin O'Neil or Dave Watson - below, or it will be on UNISONScotland's website from 27 December 2006. http://www.unison-scotland.org.uk/activists/asylum.html

For Further Information Please Contact: Dave Watson (Scottish Organiser - Policy) 07958 122 409(m) Kevin O'Neil (Information Development Officer) 07988 867 935 (m) Chris Bartter (Communications Officer) 0771 558 3729(m)