Migrants should be taught how to queue, put bins out and be nice, says Government chief after meeting with South Yorkshire Eastern European arrivals

Dame Louise Casey.
Dame Louise Casey.

Migrants should be taught how to queue, when to put their bins out and how to be "nice," the Government's integration tsar has said, after a meeting with Eastern European arrivals in South Yorkshire.

Dame Louise Casey said Britain needed to be ‘less shy’ in setting out rules and expectations for arrivals.

The senior civil servant, who published a major review on community integration in the UK last month, stood by her call for introducing an oath of allegiance for immigrants.

It would be ‘no bad thing’ to accompany it with lessons in the ‘British way of life’, she told MPs on the Commons local government and communities committee.

Dame Louise said she had held a meeting with Eastern European arrivals in Sheffield where she and local MPs had to explain the basics of life in the UK.

"They arrived, they didn’t get jobs when they thought they were going to get jobs," she said.

"Nobody had talked to them about our way of life here, about when to put the rubbish out. Nobody told them to queue, nobody told them to be nice. We were explaining the rules of the game to some of the people who were at that meeting from Eastern Europe."

Asked if immigrants should have an induction to British life, she said: "We haven’t been on it and I think as part of the package that would be no bad thing."

Dame Louise insisted English lessons were key to integration. She pointed out that the Department for Local Government and Communities had spent more on the development of the Cornish language than English in recent years. ‘Those people from Eastern Europe, if they actually spoke English it would mean we wouldn’t have to do bloody translation leaflets,’ she added.

The integration tsar, a former adviser to the Blair government, said ministers should listen to the public, 90 per cent of whom wanted English language to be compulsory. ‘Some of the people I would be most concerned about... won’t be banging down the door of an ESOL (English for Speakers of Other Languages) class,’ she added.