ABNI's role

As part of the Government’s work to ensure that migrants who settle legally in the UK can properly integrate into British society, Immigration Minister, Des Browne announced on 2nd December 2004, a new board, the Advisory Board on Naturalisation and Integration (ABNI), would be established to provide independent advice to the Government on its citizenship and integration programme.

ABNI works within the following remit to:

  1. Advise on the implementation and processes of initial and final assessment of understanding of language and of knowledge of life in the UK as required by the Nationality Immigration and Asylum Act 2002.

  2. Advise on ways in which language and citizenship education resources and support services both in the public and in the voluntary might be developed and better co-ordinated.

  3. Advise on future development of the programme of studies and suggest changes in light of feedback from early participants.

  4. Aim to publish an annual report on the administration of the learning and teaching processes involved in naturalisation on the integration of immigrants and on immigration law and procedures and educational regulations that can directly affect assessment for naturalisation.

    Much of this work involves contacts with ESOL teachers, their professional and support organizations. ABNI is also encouraging mentoring for new arrivals to further integration. Many voluntary bodies and faith groups, exist, locally and nationally, who befriend or mentor immigrants either supporting ESOL teachers or working alone. On the initiative of ABNI, a national conference on mentoring for immigrants was held on 4th March 2005, organised by the National Mentoring Network and jointly sponsored by the former Social Policy Unit of the then Immigration and Naturalisation and the Active Community Directorates of the Home Office.