Does NZ need better Muslim ‘assimilation’ processes?

A vocal critic of Islam has said that New Zealand needs Muslim assimilation centres, processes and policies.

Newstalk ZB: No need for ‘assimilation centres’, says Islamic Women’s Council

One of the world’s most prominent critics of Islam, Dutch-American activist Ayaan Hirsi Ali, made the suggestion during an interview with Newstalk ZB yesterday.

“Before you get people in from Muslim countries, whether through the [refugee] resettlement process or through some other immigration process, you must have assimilation programmes in place,” she said.

“If free societies don’t do that, if they don’t have those assimilation policies in place, then they shouldn’t bring in people because they are only asking for instability.”

How much does she know about New Zealand? We don’t have instability here. We also don’t have assimilation processes for any other religious or ethnic groups.

However Islamic Women’s Council spokeswoman Anjum Rahman said migrants already fit on to New Zealand well.

She said New Zealand has good systems in place, and volunteers also work behind the scenes to help new migrants settle in.

“Perhaps you should visit the refugee centre in Mangere and see the programmes that are already in place in New Zealand.”

I don’t know if Ali has been to New Zealand. Stuff reports that she is due to visit next month: Controversial author Ayaan Hirsi Ali says New Zealand shouldn’t feel immune from the extremes of ‘radical Islam’

No country is immune from the extremes of radical anything.

Dr Zain Ali of Auckland University’s Islamic Studies Research Unit told the NZ Herald most NZ Muslims were either:

  • NZ-born (26 per cent)
  • or came from the Indian subcontinent (27 per cent)
  • or Fiji and other Pacific islands (21 per cent),

so they were already used to living in non-Muslim-majority countries and did not need “assimilation centres”.

That’s 74% either born here or from non-Muslim majority countries.

He suggested that schools should teach all students about “civics” including New Zealand history, culture and values.

Some Kiwi adults might also benefit from learning more about New Zealand history, culture and values.

New Zealand has a history of welcoming a diverse range of visitors and immigrants.

I wouldn’t like it for myself so I would baulk and trying to force ‘assimilation’ into Remuera culture, or Westie culture, or Otara culture, or East Coast culture, or any of the cultural variations we have here.