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One Scotland Many Cultures

26/01/2007

The lastest phase of the One Scotland Many Cultures campaign has begun as a new survey reveals young people's attitudes to racism.

Two eye-catching new billboard advertisements will be displayed across the country from Monday January 29 symbolising the strength of Scotland's will to stamp out racism and discrimination.

The words 'Racism' and 'Discrimination' appearing in graffiti style on a blue painted wall are shown to be sprayed over by a large white cross - the Saltire powerfully overcoming and ridding Scotland of racism.

onescotland

The timely message chimes with new findings from a small scale survey which reveals the attitudes of some 12 - 26 year olds across Scotland.

The Young Scot survey carried out in support of the One Scotland campaign found:

  • The overwhelming majority thought it was unacceptable to be impolite or verbally offensive to people from other ethnic backgrounds; to speak negatively about people from different ethnic backgrounds to your family and friends in private or; to using derogatory terms when talking about foods and shops
  • The majority agreed that there is prejudice in Scotland against people from a minority ethnic background
  • The majority had heard people make racist comments
  • Over a quarter reported that they felt they had been a victim of racist abuse, verbal or physical, because of their nationality, skin colour, racial, ethnic or cultural background

Speaking as she was due to meet Young Scot members in Glasgow today Communities Minister Rhona Brankin said:

"The voice of young people on this issue is essential. If we are to rid our society of this negative, disgraceful prejudice, young people must understand its impact and challenge others in society, including their peers, to stand up and speak out.

"Though not a comprehensive study into young people's attitudes, those taking part in this Young Scot One Scotland consultation have been honest in their views and some have acknowledged that perhaps there have been times when they behaved in a manner which is racist.

"We have always said that changing attitudes and behaviour is a tough challenge which can't be achieved overnight. It is encouraging to hear that young people agree that racism is unacceptable but we must continue to do more in order to challenge the racism which still takes place in Scotland.

"I hope that this phase of advertising, which so clearly echoes the very points made by those questioned in the survey, keeps the message on the agenda and shows our young people that we will continue to challenge racism so that the society they are part of and are growing up in is one which respects, values and protects the diversity of all its people."

Louise Macdonald, Deputy Chief Executive of Young Scot said:

"We know from previous work we've done that young people like to talk to us about their opinions on important issues, and this consultation has provided an easy and informed way for them to have their say.

"The One Scotland campaign has helped to increase awareness and understanding of race issues and the consultation was designed to complement and support that whilst also taking things a step further by giving young people a voice on racism.

"As an organisation and as a country it is vital for us to build knowledge and understanding of our young people, their views and experiences, as this is the only way we can start to address issues and overcome any barriers they face."

Five radio adverts will be broadcast across Scotland until February 18. These adverts were produced last year. Two portray the kind of circumstances where people might witness racism and carry the endline 'If you don't say something about racism, who will?' and three highlight real personal testimonies of three people and their experiences.

48-sheet and 96 sheet advertisements will be displayed at 196 sites across Scotland from January 29 to February 8, 2007.