Ipsos/British Future Immigration Tracker
Public support for welcoming refugees is part of a broader warming of attitudes to immigration that pre-dates the Ukraine crisis, according to the latest findings from a survey that has tracked immigration attitudes since 2015.
The latest wave of the Ipsos/British Future Unbound Immigration Tracker shows three-quarters (75%) of people agree that ‘People should be able to take refuge in other countries, including in Britain, to escape from war or persecution,’ while 16% disagree. The research was conducted between 28 January and 10 February 2022, before the invasion of Ukraine and the resulting urgent calls for refugee protection for those fleeing violence – and helps explain the public support for welcoming refugees from Ukraine that has been found in other recent surveys. The survey also finds that the number of people wanting immigration numbers reduced is at its lowest level for the last seven years. Support for reducing numbers has fallen 25 points since 2015: some 42% of people now say they would like immigration number to be reduced, compared to 67% when the survey was first conducted in February 2015. Around three in ten (28%) would now prefer immigration numbers to remain at the same level, while 22% would like to see numbers increase – the highest level since the series began.
The findings reflect the gradual warming of public attitudes to immigration since the run-up to the EU referendum. The latest findings show that more people feel that immigration has had a positive effect on Britain (46%) than a negative effect (29%). When the tracker survey was first conducted in February 2015, by comparison, it found only 35% were positive while 41% were negative.
Author: British Future, with collaborating authors
Date: March 14th, 2022