Monday, Dec 15, 2003
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By Hasan Suroor
According to the findings, overtly racial attitudes alone have increased sharply with more people today openly admitting their dislike of people of other races than they did two years ago. The survey does not take account of covert racism which is encountered in everyday life. The report noted that the level of overt racism was the highest for nearly two decades.
It had declined steadily since the eighties but registered a sharp rise after 2001.
The percentage of Britons saying they were racially prejudiced was 31 per cent in 2002 compared to 25 per cent in the previous two years.
The trend was blamed on the media coverage of race-related issues, particularly in the wake of "9/11" which generated a wave of `Islamophobia'. Catherine Rothon and Anthony Heath of Oxford University, who wrote the report, said they found a link between increased racism and the hostile media coverage of asylum and immigration.
There was a long-term relationship between the two. But they said that educated people were less likely to be racially prejudiced with less than one in five graduates admitting to being prejudiced as against more than a third of those with no qualifications.
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