Government defeated on Lords amendments

Lords Dubs’ compromise amendment was passed by 279 votes to 172. It will ensure the relocation of  “a specified number of unaccompanied refugee children from other countries in Europe” to be determined by the Government in consultation with local authorities.
Lord Ramsbotham’s amendment on time limits on detention was passed by 271 votes to 206 and a further amendment regarding the detention of pregnant women tabled by Baroness Lister was also passed by 259 votes to 203. Continue reading “Government defeated on Lords amendments”

The Business of Migration

SYMAAG: For corporations like G4S, Serco, Capita and Mitie the suffering of refugees is part of their “asylum markets”. The biggest ever single Home Office contract – the disastrous COMPASS asylum housing contract –  is up for renewal next year. On the eve of an inquiry into its many failings, John Grayson looks at how global business is licking its lips at the money-making opportunities in housing, monitoring, detaining and deporting people escaping persecution.

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Shame: Tories vote against accepting 3,000 child refugees

Guardian: The amendment to the immigration bill would have allowed thousands of unaccompanied Syrian minors to enter the UK

A high-profile campaign for the UK to accept 3,000 child refugees stranded in Europe has failed after the government narrowly won a vote in the House of Commons rejecting the plan.

MPs voted against the proposals by 294 to 276 on Monday after the Home Office persuaded most potential Tory rebels that it was doing enough to help child refugees in Syria and neighbouring countries.

The amendment to the immigration bill would have forced the government to accept 3,000 unaccompanied refugee minors, mostly from Syria, who have made their way to mainland Europe.

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UK to resettle 3,000 ‘at risk’ children with families

UK to resettle 3,000 ‘at risk’ children with families 21APR2016

Immigration minister James Brokenshire hastoday released details of the scheme to bring children at risk to the UK under plans first announced in January this year.

The programme, likely to operate in a similar way to existing resettlement schemes, focuses on children at risk, such as unaccompanied children and those at risk of forced marriage.  They will be brought to the UK, if possible with their families, from the Middle East and North Africa.

The announcement also mentions the funding and resources given to help separated children in Europe and reiterates previous commitments to making the Dublin III system work to reunite family members, where required, in the UK. Continue reading “UK to resettle 3,000 ‘at risk’ children with families”

Deaths at sea: EU is guilty of killing by omission, report argues

A new report released by Forensic Oceanography – a team that specialises in the use of forensic techniques and cartography to reconstruct cases of deaths at sea – accuses EU policy makers and agencies of knowingly reducing Search and Rescue (SAR) efforts in the Mediterranean and of thus being responsible for the deaths in the first months of 2015. The report is part of the “Precarious Trajectories” research project funded by the European and Social Research Council and in collaboration with WatchTheMed. Continue reading “Deaths at sea: EU is guilty of killing by omission, report argues”

UK detention update: “end” of routine detention of pregnant women in Immigration Bill

The UK government has announced that it will end ‘the routine detention of pregnant women’ in immigration centres. It has agreed to propose an amendment to the Immigration Bill, which is currently being considered by Parliament, to introduce a time limit of 72 hours on the detention of pregnant women. This time limit is extendable to up to a week with Ministerial approval.  Continue reading “UK detention update: “end” of routine detention of pregnant women in Immigration Bill”

Faith and Community leaders demand Immigration Detention Reform

Interfaith parliamentary event raising a voice against indefinite immigration detention

On the 20th April we partnered with Tzelem to organise over 60 faith and community leaders at the House of Commons. We went with a simple message; the system of indefinite immigration detention is ‘inefficient, expensive and unjust’ and is in desperate need of reform.

Paul Parker Tweeted from this event

See more, photos Tweets etc here

URGENT Immigration Bill Sample letters to MPs

The Immigration Bill is expected in the Commons next Monday 25 April 2016. Would Friends please ask their MPs to support these five amendments?  

The titles of those amendments is in the text below, or you can find the full list of amendments here:

Many thanks to those – especially Jessica Metheringham – who have drafted a short letter/email which we encourage Quakers to use as a template to send to their MP.  It’s also intended as a template, so we can encourage Friends to put their own particular stamp on it. Continue reading “URGENT Immigration Bill Sample letters to MPs”

Role Play guidelines

Before they became refugees, their lives too were normal.
Imagine it is your home, town, country that is being destroyed and you have had to flee. You do not know what has become of your family, friends and colleagues. You hear of the destruction of your culture and history. You are ‘one of the lucky ones’. You have been resettled and are safe, in a country where everything is different: the language, food, customs, climate, landscape. Discuss those aspects of your life you have lost. Continue reading “Role Play guidelines”