May emigrate but where to?(98 Posts)
DH and I were talking about what we would do in the event of a Brexit and possible social and economic decline. DH would be keen to leave if things went bad and whilst I'm not as keen as him I'd go.
There are a few reasons why we are disillusioned with UK right now and one of them is that we are become increasingly worried by the nationalism and openly xenophobic atmosphere mainly driven by the media and some public figures but seeping into normal life. It's becoming quite toxic and negative here. We are a mixed race family with me being mixed race, him white and a mixed raced DD. We fear that all the anger directed at Eastern Europeans may be directed towards visible minorities.
This is because if a Brexit happens and all the EE's leave but the economy goes to shit, people will be looking at new scapegoats for the UK's failings. In England we tend to view everything we do as superior and thus we are never at fault it must always be an 'outsiders' fault. The anger won't go towards the leaders who have made poor decisions or the elites who have sucked up the countries wealth or technology which has replaced jobs. They'll blame the poor African toilet cleaner or Asian shop keeper or someone like me. Just like the Polish plumbers have been blamed.
Anyway enough rambling what I want to know is where in the world could we go if things fall apart? We would want to stay in a wealthy country as we are educated and earn good money. We would want to go somewhere with well known companies to work for that would further our careers, a country with good schools etc. We recently visited the Caribbean and all races seemed to get on well there, none of us felt uncomfortable but they don't have any industry other than tourism so career wise it's a no.
Many other European countries have even worse problems. America with Trump, all of his supporters and lax gun laws is a no although my DB said Vermont is fantastic and would suit my family. Canada is almost impossible to get a visa for as we don't do essential jobs.
Where could a small mixed race family of educated, high earners go where we would feel comfortable or even welcome if the U.K goes tits up? And to be honest as I said before it's not even the tits up thing we're becoming worried by the atmosphere and public discourse.
I'd wait and see what happens first personally. You seem to be making a massive decision on something that hadn't happened yet.
I personally think you're being ridiculous. Nobody will blame you for anything. The whole purpose of Brexit is so that we can choose who we allow into the UK. If you are mixed race it's very likely more people you would class as being of your own race will be allowed to come once we sort out our immigration policy.
We were just talking about in the pub. We haven't put the house on the market (and maybe we wouldn't take the plunge) but it was a serious 'what if' type question which led to us realising we're pretty unhappy with how this is all playing out.
We both love the UK and have previously said we wouldn't live anywhere else but we've seen an uglier side. I don't want DD or us to live with increasing negativity, scapegoat culture and financial and social decline.
Plan B for us at present is Iceland or New Zealand.
I don't think this perfect place exists, sorry.
In fact I think what you are trying to avoid is even more rife in many developed countries .
The Caribbean does have an offshore industry if you would be morally happy being involved in that, although if you worked in tax or law you would probably already know that so maybe not helpful.
I would have thought any major city in a reasonably liberal democracy would be OK for you? I guess the traditional places for disillusioned Brits are Australia, NZ, Canada - if you have languages then currently at least the whole of Europe is open to you. So not very helpful either?
I think you need to think a bit more about the positive reasons for a move I.e. What you're looking for, rather than the negative reasons I.e. Why you want to leave.
I know we can't be the only one who feel very uneasy about how this is all being played out? For example I can understand why so many Americans have researched Canadian citizenship if Trump gets in.
Nothing wrong with putting a Plan B into place, OP.
DH and I have discussed this too. Fortunately, we have residency rights in a couple of other countries, so we do have options if we really need them.
I live in SE Asia.
racism is inherent here, and so normalised that I'm sure it will not change for many generations.
The hierarchy is
Mixed race is so unusual, it isn't even discussed. It is perfectly legal (and common) to advertise a job for only a certain race, and some ethnic groups openly get better interest on loans, better business grants and scholarships to higher education. Refugees have the same status as a criminal, with no healthcare, right to housing or education.
So I'd say the UK is pretty open and welcoming really, in comparison.
The grass isn't always greener- I know this is an extreme example, but the UK isn't the worst place to live (even if there is a Brexit- which I don't think there will be, people are scared of change)
Our plan is Canada (going anyway given time to save, but will step up our efforts if Brexit happens).
A lot will depend on what your qualifications and job prospects are as to whether or not you can get the required visa. We are very lucky that DH has a job that is in short supply in a large amount of countries, which meant we only had to consider where I would most likely also be able to get work.
Any links to anywhere else?
In my dreams it would be a lovely little sunny island somewhere with waitrose shopping delivery.
What about Scotland? If you look at the stats for the last general election the UKIP votes were way lower than in England and Wales.
I'm not sure that anywhere else is better for a mixed race family. Certainly not Australia or NZ. Your whole family would possibly have more opportunities in America but at the cost of lower social security safety net and higher crime rates.
The OP is not overreacting. I think it's difficult to see how xenophobic people are and how unfortunate it is being a minority if you're not in that situation yourself.
OP, I think most European countries are heading in this direction unfortunately.
But what about Norway, Iceland or Germany? I think those are the better ones...although not perfect.
I thought of Canada Nicki but as OP says, it's hard to get a visa.
OP I wouldn't worry about the public discourse- we're a long way from xenophobia and scapegoating becoming the accepted narrative, it's always challenged. And I don't think we'll leave the EU. Where do you live now?
You can't just move wherever you feel like though. All countries have criteria for emigrating and you have to have certain occupations or skills, be under a certain age and have the means to support yourself.
So if you're a doctor/nurse couple or an air traffic control/dentist couple both under 40 you will find it easier to emigrate than an office admin worker/retail worker couple or marketing manager/cleaner couple.
I wouldn't dismiss the US as a whole. Some states are as different as countries can be. There's a lot of legislative control at the state level. Massachusetts might suit? Very low crime, highly educated with very good school (files as its own country in PISA). Lots of Brits there already.
We are thinking of emigrating if the Remain vote wins.
massive massive over-reaction.
This country is one of the most tolerant enlightened in Europe if not in the world.
You are simply over-reacting to the possibility of the UK leaving the EU with the idea that anywhere else is fine and not xenophobic at all.
I have lived in Canada and my son is mixed race - if you think all is sweetness and light there you are wrong. Most commonwealth countries have strict entrance criteria (I wish we had the more strict ones personally) and you need a certain number of point to immigrate.
Those who wish the UK to have control of its destiny are not all racist, xenophobic or bigoted so you are running from a perceived 'bogey-man' of the far right who are not in power here or likely to be.
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