Boris Johnson: everyone in Britain should speak English Watch

navarre
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http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/poli...k-English.html

Everyone living in Britain should be able to speak English and councils should drop the “multi-culty” practice of translating information into other languages, Boris Johnson has said.
The Mayor of London said he agreed “passionately” with the suggestion by Nigel Farage, the Leader of the UK Independence Party, that NHS staff ought to have a good command of the English language.
During his monthly LBC Radio phone-in show, Mr Johnson was asked about the remarks by Mr Farage, who at the weekend said he agreed that doctors and nurses who could not speak proper English should be “winnowed out” of the NHS.
“I agree passionately with you," he told a caller who said he shared Mr Farage’s view. “I am amazed by reports that people cannot make themselves understood when speaking English to people working in the NHS. That is completely wrong.
“I think everybody in this country, particularly people working in our public services, should speak English.

Boris Johnson: a week with London's maverick Mayor 10 Oct 2014
“I think everybody in London, everybody who comes to work in our economy, should be able to speak English.
Boris Johnson has pretty much got it exactly right. It is pretty essential that those working in the NHS understand English to a good level- after all, how can a caring doctor or nurse fully meet their patients needs if they cannot communicate with them? I also agree that we should not punish those who don't speak good English in public services- rather, we should invest more money into mandatory teaching schemes where they can get a good grasp of the language.

I don't agree with Mr Johnson on stopping councils translation documentation into other languages, however. Where local services demand, translation into the two or three most common languages should be done.
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Rakas21
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He is correct.
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Hopple
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Everyone in Britain should be learning English at the very least. Where people depend on them for a service they should already speak fluent English. I don't know how you'd "winnow out" non-speakers currently in the NHS, but it's an easy requirement at the recruitment stage for the future.
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kunoichi
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I dont understand why you wouldnt learn the language of the country you live and work in.
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jimi191
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Although I agree with him on principle and think steps should definitely be taken (if not taken already) to ensure people coming to the UK to work are capable of speaking English it doesn't solve the problem of a large number of people already living in the UK not having a decent grasp on the language and it's not always immigrants, a lot of people who have grown up in the more isolated communities don't have a good grasp of English despite being born and raised here, stopping the translation services many councils offer could cause serious problems with people, either truthfully or not, being able claim they don't understand information presented to them.
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Zargabaath
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I agree that everyone who either works or studies here should be able to speak English to a reasonable level. That said, if you aren't working or in education there isn't really much need is there? Do we really need to force an old lady who rarely leaves the house to learn English? People underestimate how hard it is to learn a language at that age.
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VinnicombeDmv
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The way I see it, if you are to move to a country to live there permanently (or at the very least for numerous years), then the least you can do is try to learn the language. Now, I won't say that people need to even have a basic understanding of the language before they come, so long as someone in their family does. I moved to Spain when I was 7, having only taken a few lessons from friends of my mother. It took months before my brother, sister or I were able to communicate decently, so we relied upon our mother (who was, and still is, fluent in Spanish) to teach us (we couldn't even join the local primary school at first) and do the necessary communicating for us.
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HigherMinion
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You lazy privileged English would say that. You hate learning foreign languages. Pffffffft. Better check that English speaking privilege!
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Jasaron
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(Original post by HigherMinion)
You lazy privileged English would say that. You hate learning foreign languages. Pffffffft. Better check that English speaking privilege!
As someone from an immigrant family, I agree with Boris completely. If you want to come into a nation and work, you should at least try to learn the language. You speak of the 'English-speaking privilege', but in reality the majority of Brits that leave their home nation to live abroad don't expect things to be translated for them; they learn the native language at school or by other means such as Rosetta Stone.
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HigherMinion
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(Original post by Jasaron)
As someone from an immigrant family, I agree with Boris completely. If you want to come into a nation and work, you should at least try to learn the language. You speak of the 'English-speaking privilege', but in reality the majority of Brits that leave their home nation to live abroad don't expect things to be translated for them; they learn the native language at school or by other means such as Rosetta Stone.
Are you trying to imply that we should force immigrants against their will to take part in British culture at the very least by speaking the English language? How oppressive.
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Jasaron
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(Original post by HigherMinion)
Are you trying to imply that we should force immigrants against their will to take part in British culture at the very least by speaking the English language? How oppressive.
Oppressive? The only way to allow immigrants to integrate into British society is to give them ample opportunities to learn the language. Only then can they begin to mix with the rest of the population. Leaving immigrants to continue to settle in growing, non-English-speaking communities (much like the one I live in) simply results in entire sectors of the nation being 'cordoned off', and turned into no-go zones for Brits. All this does is ostracise immigrants and condemn them to a life in which they cannot communicate with the citizens of the country in which they live. That seems far more "oppressive" to me.
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HigherMinion
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(Original post by Jasaron)
Oppressive? The only way to allow immigrants to integrate into British society is to give them ample opportunities to learn the language. Only then can they begin to mix with the rest of the population. Leaving immigrants to continue to settle in growing, non-English-speaking communities (much like the one I live in) simply results in entire sectors of the nation being 'cordoned off', and turned into no-go zones for Brits. All this does is ostracise immigrants and condemn them to a life in which they cannot communicate with the citizens of the country in which they live. That seems far more "oppressive" to me.
Irony is a glorious thing. I agree entirely with you. Stay vigilant.
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Rakas21
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(Original post by HigherMinion)
Are you trying to imply that we should force immigrants against their will to take part in British culture at the very least by speaking the English language? How oppressive.
Immigration to the UK is a privilege granted by the UK government for the purpose of benefiting the UK so yes we should force them to integrate. We are under no obligation to pander to the cultural wishes of immigrants.
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HigherMinion
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(Original post by Rakas21)
Immigration to the UK is a privilege granted by the UK government for the purpose of benefiting the UK so yes we should force them to integrate. We are under no obligation to pander to the cultural wishes of immigrants.
I'm more concerned that we actually have to debate this and not take the integrational stance as read. Sadly, muh multiculti makes it so.

If you say everyone should speak English, the logical conclusion is that multiculturalism is bad and we should make immigrants properly integrate, or ban them from entering. I think this is reasonable, but so many do not (the ones who can hide or run from the damage they create).
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Lady Comstock
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(Original post by Zargabaath)
I agree that everyone who either works or studies here should be able to speak English to a reasonable level. That said, if you aren't working or in education there isn't really much need is there? Do we really need to force an old lady who rarely leaves the house to learn English? People underestimate how hard it is to learn a language at that age.
Yes. There are numerous circumstances where she needs to speak English in order to participate in society properly: being arrested, testifying in court, speaking to the local council about issues, etc. Even basic stuff such as going to the shops requires at least some English. If you go to a chemist and urgently need something, you're not going to benefit if you cannot properly describe it to the pharmacist, are you?

The Government should subsidise more English language schools for people like your hypothetical old lady.
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tengentoppa
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It's not an unreasonable requirement is it
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barnetlad
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I think that anyone who lives in the country should learn English and so in essence agree with Mr Johnson. My main reason is that then anyone who needs help, especially with medical issues or if they are suffering harm in any way, can get it more easily.

I think that the same applies for someone who moves abroad, that they learn the local language.

I would not extradite John Prescott though or Wayne Rooney in spite of their limited English. No other country deserves them.
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Rakas21
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(Original post by HigherMinion)
I'm more concerned that we actually have to debate this and not take the integrational stance as read. Sadly, muh multiculti makes it so.

If you say everyone should speak English, the logical conclusion is that multiculturalism is bad and we should make immigrants properly integrate, or ban them from entering. I think this is reasonable, but so many do not (the ones who can hide or run from the damage they create).
Your entirely correct.
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MagicNMedicine
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(Original post by Rakas21)
Your entirely correct.
You're

Wouldn't normally be a pedant but I think on this thread at least we can use correct English out of respect for the language and our heritage.
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HigherMinion
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(Original post by MagicNMedicine)
You're

Wouldn't normally be a pedant but I think on this thread at least we can use correct English out of respect for the language and our heritage.
I was going to leave him alone since he agreed with me, but ewe have a point.
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