Trevor Phillips spoke at a Policy Exchange think tank about the integration of Muslims into British society.
This comes after David Cameron’s comments proposing that immigrants must pass an English speaking test in order to stay in the country.
Mr Phillips, chair of the Equality and Human Rights Commission from 2003 to 2012 said, “Continuously pretending that a group is somehow eventually going to become like the rest of us, is perhaps the deepest form of disrespect”. However, many people have strongly disagreed, criticising his use of “us” and the suggestion that if you are Muslim you cannot be British.
Members of the Muslim Council have said that Mr. Phillips comments assumes that Muslims “are not civilised enough to be part and parcel of British society”.