No Longer Invisible: The Latin American Community in London
New research highlights that the Latin American community in London has increased significantly over the last decade and although comparable in size to other large migrant and ethnic groups in the capital its contribution and needs have largely been ignored.
No Longer Invisible is the most comprehensive research to date of this largely overlooked community and was commissioned by charities Trust for London and the Latin American Women’s Rights Service. Produced by Queen Mary, University of London the report establishes the first robust estimate of the size of the community and explores a number of key economic and social features of the Latin American community in London.
The size of the Latin American community in London is estimated to be 113,500 and it has grown nearly four-fold since the 2001 census (the UK figure is estimated to be 186,500). This means that Latin Americans now represent a significant part of the city’s total population. Their numbers compare in size to other large migrant and ethnic groups, such as the Polish-born population, which comprises around 122,000. The largest national group are Brazilians followed by Colombians. There are also large numbers of Ecuadorians, Bolivians and Peruvians.
The research primarily draws its findings from a large quantitative survey, of over 1,000 Latin Americans living in London. It shows that:
- It is a largely young and well educated population which has very high employment rates (85%).
- Although employed in all spheres of London’s labour market the majority are unable to fully utilise their professional skills. More than half are employed in low-skilled and low-paid jobs in cleaning, catering and hospitality services, despite previous careers such as teaching, accountancy, engineering and social work.
- Over 40% of Latin Americans experience workplace abuse and exploitation. Shockingly 11% of Latin American workers are illegally paid below the National Minimum Wage, which is 10 times higher than the average rate for the UK population (1.1%).
- Despite lower than average incomes, take-up of public services and state benefits is low: 1 in 5 Latin Americans have never been to a GP, 6 out of 10 have never been to a dentist in the UK and only 1 in 5 receive some form of state welfare benefit (which are primarily in-work benefits such as tax credits).
- The majority of Latin Americans (70%), including the second generation who are fluent in English, perceive discrimination to be a major barrier to improving their quality of life.
From our Twitter
This study spoke to young black men searching for good city jobs in London. 38% said that the demeanour of people interviewing them for jobs would change when they saw that they were black. https://www.trustforlondon.org.uk/publications/moving-young-black-men-londons-financial-sector-aspirations-and-experiences/ …15 Dec 2018
This study from @justlifeuk found that over half of people in unsupported temporary accommodation reported having no working locks on their doors. Temporary Accommodation Boards would help to make life easier for people in this unwelcome situation. https://www.trustforlondon.org.uk/publications/are-temporary-accommodation-boards-feasible/ …14 Dec 2018
We give funding to organisations seeking to tackle poverty and inequality in London. Find out more about what we fund here: https://www.trustforlondon.org.uk14 Dec 2018
Almost two thirds of jobs in the hospitality sector are low paid. With most Londoners in poverty from a working family, we need to address the high costs and low pay which are driving Londoners into poverty. pic.twitter.com/JJS22vQFVL13 Dec 2018