Stop treating ethnic minority communities as one voting bloc, argues new Policy Exchange report

4 May 2014

A major new study by the think tank Policy Exchange has outlined the clear and meaningful differences between ethnic communities, and revealed that people from ethnic minority backgrounds will make up nearly a third of the UK’s population by 2050.

The five largest distinct Black and Minority Ethnic (BME) communities could potentially double from 8 million people or 14 per cent of the population to between 20-30 per cent by the middle of the century.

Other key findings included:

That ethnic minority communities predominantly live in three main cities, with 50 per cent living in London, Manchester and Birmingham alone.
That although all BME communities have higher levels of unemployment and low level of full time workers than the White community, Indians cluster in the highest skilled professions.
That all minority groups have higher proportions of students staying on in formal education, especially university, at 16 and 18 than the White population.

Rishi Sunak, co-author of the handbook, said: “These communities will continue to become an ever more significant part of Britain, especially in future elections. However, as our research demonstrates ethnic minorities are not one homogeneous political group. From education to employment, housing to trust in the police, politicians from all parties must understand the different issues affecting individual communities.”