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March 2018

‘Set a date for everyone to speak English in UK’ says ex-integration adviser

The UK government should set a date for everyone in the country to speak English, a former official who advised on integration has said.

Ministers should encourage integration by giving a ‘very significant boost’ to promoting the English language throughout the country, Dame Louise Casey told BBC Radio 4's Westminster Hour.

In her 2016 report on improving integration in the UK, Ms Casey said that a common language would help to ‘heal rifts across Britain’ and advised providing additional funding in order to promote English language skills through community-based classes.

Dame Louise told the BBC yesterday (March 11): ‘I would be quite old school about this and I would set a target that says by 'x' date we want everybody in the country to be able to speak a common language.’

She added: 'But what I do know is everybody of working age and of school age should be able to speak one language and I think the public in particular would feel some relief.'

The UK government’s new Integrated Communities Strategy document is due to be published later this week.

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