New QARN leaflet – Excessive Fees: Leave to Remain in UK April 2020

12 April 2020: Press release

Out now:  a  new leaflet from the Quaker Asylum and Refugee Network (QARN) on recent increases to the fees for those seeking refuge in this country.   Along with other groups and faith bodies QARN seeks to inspire others to express outrage at this injustice. Continue reading “New QARN leaflet – Excessive Fees: Leave to Remain in UK April 2020”

Coronavirus: Access to healthcare, housing and food for all

RE: ACCESS TO HEALTHCARE, HOUSING AND FOOD FOR ALL 
#healthandsafetyforall
cc:   UK Home Secretary and UK Health Secretary,
Irish Health Secretary and Irish Minister for Justice and Equality,
All UK MPs,
All Members of the Irish Parliament (the Oireachtas),
All Leaders and CEOs of Local Authorities and Health Services in the UK,
All CEOs of Councils and Health Services in Ireland,
Professor Neil Ferguson, Imperial College, London,
Dr. Tony Holohan, Chief Medical Officer, Ireland
Prof Ruairi Brugha, Professor of Public Health and Epidemiology, Ireland27th March 2020

Dear Sirs
RE: ACCESS TO HEALTHCARE, HOUSING AND FOOD FOR ALL
We call upon the British and Irish States to act immediately so that all undocumented, destitute and migrant people in the legal process in both the UK and Ireland are granted Status Now, as in Leave to Remain.  In this way every human, irrespective of their nationality or citizenship can access healthcare, housing, food and the same sources of income from the State as everyone else.   Continue reading “Coronavirus: Access to healthcare, housing and food for all”

Epistle from ‘Envisioning a world that is open to all: let us see what love can do’ Conference at Woodbrooke, Birmingham, UK   27-29 September 2019

Ffriends,

From a gathering of 60+ people[i], including Quakers and non-Quakers, people who have experienced the weight of the immigration system, artists, poets, musicians and singers. Continue reading “Epistle from ‘Envisioning a world that is open to all: let us see what love can do’ Conference at Woodbrooke, Birmingham, UK   27-29 September 2019”

QARN Leaflets:

We have the following leaflets here: About QARN_Detention_Language_Hostile environment_Removals Deportations_Excessive fees

QARN has put together leaflets that you can download from this page by clicking on the links below. Please feel free to download and print off your own copies. There is also a form below, for ordering printed copies of our leaflets – which are free:

Continue reading “QARN Leaflets:”

QARN next meetings

qarn logo smQARN’s quarterly meetings usually run from 11am – 4pm.

Plans for where and how we hold our Meetings depend on the progress of measures being put in place in relation to Coronavirus.

18 July – our AGM:  in view of the restrictions in place due to the Coronavirus, we will have a meeting using Zoom https://zoom.us/ to which Quakers are welcome.

We plan to start at 10.30am to manage the technical aspects of a Zoom meeting, falling quiet at around 10.45am, and beginning business at 11am.

17 October all being well we will meet 11am – 4pm at Gloucester Friends Meeting House, Greyfriars, Southgate Street, Gloucester GL1 1TS

23 January 2021: Friends House, 173 Euston Road, London, NW1 2BJ

If you are not already receiving our emails on the QARN network and want to join the network, or just this Meeting, please email info@qarn.org.uk  including your name and the Quaker Meeting you are attached to.

A Short History of Resistance to Immigration Detention and Deportations in the United Kingdom

April 2020: Bill MacKeith, published by Oxford Against Immigration Detention http://oaid.org.uk

In 2019, ‘enforced returns’ from the UK fell to 7,361, 22% lower than the previous year and the lowest number since records began in 2004. Over the same period, there were 11,421 ‘voluntary’ departures. 

On 31 December 2019, there were 1,637 people in immigration detention, 8% fewer than on 31 December 2018, and fewer than half the number on 30 September 2017. The number of people entering detention in 2019 was similar to the previous year at 24,443. Prior to this, there has been a downward trend since 2015. (Immigration Statistics, Year Ending December 2019)

Continue reading “A Short History of Resistance to Immigration Detention and Deportations in the United Kingdom”

Court: bar set too high for NHS surcharge and visa fee waivers

Guardian: 21 May 2020 Tribunal says if migrants can prove they cannot pay fees then they should not have to do so

The Home Office asked the family to pay £7,665 in visa fees and the health surcharge, even though the family produced evidence to the court of having just one penny in their savings account. The Home Office said they did not meet the destitution test because a friend was giving them accommodation and they were getting basic support to survive from their church and a food bank. …
[…] The court ruled that the Home Office was applying the wrong test for whether or not people should have to pay thousands of pounds for their visas and NHS surcharge… Read more

Continue reading “Court: bar set too high for NHS surcharge and visa fee waivers”

Immigration Bill – the issues

Update: this Bill was passed at the 2nd Reading  Download this briefing

The Immigration and Social Security Co-ordination (EU Withdrawal) Bill will end the EU’s rules on free movement of persons into the UK, bringing EEA and Swiss nationals and their family members under UK immigration control. This means they will require permission to enter and remain in the UK. Continue reading “Immigration Bill – the issues”

Idea for a Zoom reading meeting

QARN ‘Excessive fees: leave to remain in the UK’ leaflet:  In these times of online meetings, here’s a suggested format for considering the important issues raised in this leaflet.  Gloucestershire AM has recently had a good experience of this.  Having originally planned a whole ‘faith in action’ day on refuge and asylum issues, we had to alter it to a zoom event instead. Continue reading “Idea for a Zoom reading meeting”

COVID-19 IMMIGRATION DETENTION CRISIS

[Note from QARN: what can you do – bring this to the attention of your MP – especially if your MP is on the Home Affairs Select Committee. This is going to the Committee on 29.4.2020 – see Members below]

Dear Home Secretary,

We, Freed Voices, are writing to express our concern regarding the serious risks posed by Covid-19 to those who continue to be held in Immigration Removal Centres (IRCs) across the UK. Continue reading “COVID-19 IMMIGRATION DETENTION CRISIS”

Ease the immense suffering for undocumented migrants

20.4.2020 The BaRE UK: The impact of COVID-19 government measures on asylum seekersAsylum seekers are already the most isolated and marginalised people in the UK and things have just gotten a lot worse for them.

Loraine Masiya Mponela, the chairperson for Coventry Asylum and Refugee Action Group (CARAG), reflects on the unique challenges being faced by asylum seekers and undocumented migrants in the UK.

Continue reading “Ease the immense suffering for undocumented migrants”

Global Compacts for Migration, and Refugees

Briefing from Parliament: The United Nations Global Compact for Migration  

The Global Compact for Safe, Orderly and Regular Migration was formally adopted by 164 Member States of the United Nations, including the UK, in December 2018. This briefing explains what’s in the Compact and its implications for Member States.

Download the full report: The United Nations Global Compact for Migration (PDF, 2 MB) Continue reading “Global Compacts for Migration, and Refugees”

QCEA: Covid-19 and inequality _ beyond isolation

Quaker Council for European Affairs: 9 April 2020 Navigating uncertain waters: Covid-19 and inequality 

Isolation, disruption and confusion have interrupted many of our lives. Kékéli Kpognon and Andrew Lane chart a way through by focusing on those who have been surviving these conditions for years.

While some countries have relaxed rules towards asylum seekers, others have made their lives harder. Image: <a href="https://www.instagram.com/goppangnyarta/">Goppang Nyarta (Boush)</a> a young Darfuri designer, engineer and artist-in-residence at Quaker House Brussels in 2019.
While some countries have relaxed rules towards asylum seekers, others have made their lives harder. Image: Goppang Nyarta (Boush) a young Darfuri designer, engineer and artist-in-residence at Quaker House Brussels in 2019.

Policies that show generosity towards asylum seekers make some European politicians very nervous, which is why some of what we have seen in Europe in the last few days is so remarkable. The deportation of asylum seekers is being suspended (Germany), immigration detainees are being released (Italy), homeless people are being housed (France), and some are being given temporary asylum (Portugal).

But rather than protect people from Covid-19, some governments are using the crisis for other purposes. We are seeing the right to claim asylum under European and international law being suspended (Greece), and the granting of new powers for a prime minister to rule by decree indefinitely (Hungary).

Continue reading “QCEA: Covid-19 and inequality _ beyond isolation”