Scottish government criticized for immigrants ad campaign

Aug. 30, 2013 at 12:02 PM
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GLASGOW, Scotland, Aug. 30 (UPI) -- Scotland's Home Office is getting more heat for its advertising targeting immigrants, with critics saying it "borders on racism."

In the latest flap, the Home Office placed posters in immigration reporting centers in Glasgow and elsewhere advising immigrants to "ask about going home" and offering to book flights for them, the British newspaper The Guardian reported Friday. The posters follow an earlier bus advertisement campaign that warned immigrants: "In the U.K. illegally? Go home or face arrest."

Business Secretary Vince Cable called the posters an offensive stunt and Sandra White, a member of the Scottish Parliament, said they are "totaling inappropriate and appalling."

"In my view the campaign borders on the racist," she said. "The posters are in an area where most people who go there are African or Asian and to my mind they are there to put fear into people."

The Herald Scotland reported the campaign started July 29 and is to run until Oct. 4. A Home Office spokesman said the campaign is "to ensure people know we can provide sensitive advice and assistance to help them return home with dignity."

"Those with no right to remain in the U.K. should leave voluntarily," the spokesman told the newspaper.

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