Why should we promote the positive contribution of Poles to the British economy? Isn’t it obvious?
Some politicians and media tend to use the Polish community as a scapegoat or a cat’s paw in the debate about immigration. The economic arguments are often marginalised and the common cultural and historical bonds forgotten. We want to refresh some people’s memory and we believe it should be worthy to mention the contribution of Polish soldiers, cryptologists and pilots to the allied victory in the Second World War, that Polish and other EU migrants added £5bn more in taxes in the years between 2004 and 2011 than they took out in public services, that the Polish migrants are considered “dynamic and resourceful” and have added 1 percent to the UK’s GDP since 2005, that the Polish community is one of the most entrepreneurial in the UK and that many Poles today are glad and grateful to Britain for being able to call it their home.
What’s the issue with the “Polish concentration camps”? I don’t understand.
Unfortunately some British media have used false terms such as “Polish ghettos”, “Polish concentration camps”, “Poland’s Auschwitz”. Poland was Britain’s loyal ally during the Second World War and the thought that it could be blamed for the horrors caused by Nazi Germany is very worrying. According to a research prepared in February 2015 by Populus (commissioned by the Polish Media Issues) 10% of the surveyed British people believed that Poland, not Nazi Germany, created the Auschwitz concentration camp. You can read about these media issues at a website of the Institute of National Remembrance, Wikipedia discussion, a guide by the Polish Embassy in Washington and see an example of an intervention made by the Polish Embassy in London.
We’re currently helping Poles in the UK to easily reach out to their MPs. We’re watching each single MP and their statements on the Polish community in the UK. We strongly believe in fostering the good British-Polish relations and oppose populism and scapegoating of Poles. Recently we started a dialogue with Royston Smith MP from Southampton, who happened to make a slightly unpleasant comment about Poles. After hundreds of written protests the MP wrote a rectification and stays in good relations with us. We strongly praise the positive comments about Poles in the UK, such as the recent comments of Daniel Kawczynski MP and Philip Hammond MP.