Liberty report: A Guide to the Hostile Environment
Conclusions: This guide to the hostile environment may make for difficult reading, but its purpose is to help us to know our enemy.
Internal border controls amount to state-sanctioned discrimination
and are fundamentally incompatible with the human rights laws the
UK is signed up to.
This country has become a place where parents fear sending their
children to school, unwell people avoid seeking medical care for lifethreatening conditions and people sleeping rough hide from services
that should exist to support them.
But this guide also highlights some of the opposition to the
Government’s toxic vision and explains how we can take positive
action to stop it in its tracks.
Small groups of people have mobilised up and down the country,
often without any funding or much campaigning experience, to
stand in solidarity with the migrants forced into destitution by these
measures. The Government believes that its hostile environment
enjoys the broad support of the public – but countless small acts
every day show that this is not the case.
So take this guide and – if you feel able – think about what action
you could take. Could you join one of the grassroots groups
accompanying people to access support to which they’re entitled?
Could you set up a spare room network or accompanying scheme in
your local area?
Could you write to your MP to ask if their next party manifesto will
oppose the hostile environment in its entirety? Will you intervene
if you see an immigration raid? Will you organise your workplace to
demand that migrant workers aren’t discriminated against, and are
supported to retain their immigration status?
The Government’s attempt to create a hostile environment is
dependent on the willing participation of people across society – but
that will also be its downfall. For as long as we refuse to participate,
we can fight the Government’s attempts to turn us into border
guards. We can fight for a country that guarantees people’s human
rights, whoever they are and wherever they come from.
That fight has already
We hope you
will join it.