Response to ESOL funding announcement

Responding to the Prime Minister’s announcement of £20m funding to teach Muslim women in the UK to speak English, London Assembly Member, Andrew Dismore AM, said:


“Whilst of course this funding is welcome, it will support the very people who had this help ripped away from them only last year. Without a good grasp of the English language people struggle to integrate into society, they struggle to find work and they’re often left languishing on benefits. It beggars belief that the government saw fit to dismantle funding for these courses in the first place.


“Not only have they left many vulnerable people isolated from the communities in which they live, but those responsible for teaching English as a second language have also been left in limbo, unsure about the stability of their own future.


“Last November I called on the Mayor of London to lobby the government to mitigate the impact of cuts to English language courses in the capital. Fast forward 11 weeks and I am still waiting on his response.


“Londoners need the English language if they’re to stand any chance of building a brighter life for themselves and their families. But the government’s decision to play about with this funding, and Boris Johnson’s willingness to sit back and watch them do so, risks undermining those aspirations.”