Birds of Passage

AuthorJ. H. Bulmer
Published date01 July 1965
Date01 July 1965
DOIhttp://doi.org/10.1177/0032258X6503800702
Subject MatterArticle
DET.
SGT.J.
H.BULMER
Bradford City Police
In our
May
issue we published an article by Supt. A. G. Rose (Man-
chester City Police) on the general problem
of
the coloured immigrant,
which constituted a plea
for
understanding. The following contribution
by a police officer working in a city with a large immigrant population
deals with the police problems resulting from short-term immigration.
BIRDS
OF PASSAGE
In the short span of 20 years, the citizens of Bradford have wit-
nessed, first with mild and amused curiosity and later, with a feeling
of misgiving, the peaceful invasion of the city by coloured people
from the sub-continent of India which began as a trickle just after
the second world war and had reached over 50 a week just prior to
the introduction of the Commonwealth Immigrants Act in 1962.
Since the introduction of this Act, the inflow has been much
reduced, although there is little doubt that large numbers have evaded
the immigration control and a fair proportion of them has settled in
Bradford. This consists of seaman deserters, and those who have
been lawfully landed as students or visitors, but who in fact have
travelled here to obtain employment. Exactly how many are living
in the city at the present time is difficult to state with any degree of
accuracy, but a conservative estimate is between 12,000 and 14,000.
Different
Immigrants
The ratio of Pakistani to Indian is in the region of about seven to
one. With the exception of about 400 Pakistani married women, the
majority of these immigrants are married men with wives and families
in Pakistan. A figure of around 14,000 may be a manageable pro-
portion in a population of 300,000, but the position would materially
change if these married men sought to bring their wives and families
here. This would increase their number by at least four or five times.
Such a situation would create a serious social problem in view of the
overcrowded conditions in which the Pakistanis seem to prefer to
live, with the resultant health problems.
Anyone aware of the fact that after the 1939-1945 war, Bradford
absorbed over 8,000 mid-European immigrants, men, women and
children-mainly
in family
groups-without
difficulty, might be
inclined to think that the present problem is being unduly magnified.
It
should be borne in mind, however, that the Europeans were
immigrants in the truest sense and on arrival set about learning the
English language, the first and major obstacle to any immigrant's
integration. Having mastered the language the mid-Europeans have
July 1965 308

To continue reading

Request your trial

VLEX uses login cookies to provide you with a better browsing experience. If you click on 'Accept' or continue browsing this site we consider that you accept our cookie policy. ACCEPT