Intervention by the Courts

Updated 27 January 2022: Guardian: Home Office accused of ‘bullying’ asylum seekers into handing over phones

Judicial review begins in high court accusing government of operating a blanket policy in ‘complete secrecy’

Three asylum seekers brought a case to the high court on Tuesday claiming that the home secretary operated a secret, blanket policy to seize mobile phones from people arriving on small boats and then download the data from them.

The unpublished policy for the handover of the new arrivals’ phones operated between April and November 2020. It is likely to have involved the confiscation of thousands of mobile phones, the court heard.

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Home Office ignored Covid advice not to put asylum seekers in barracks

Updated 26 January 2022: Letter through JCWI: We also want to be safe’ – Sign our open letter

Faced with COVID, the Government should have done everything in its power to ensure everyone had support. Everyone needs a way to earn a living, access to the public safety net if they need it, safe accommodation, and access to vaccines and the NHS.

But Hostile Environment policies cut undocumented migrants off from these basic rights. Because they don’t have the right piece of paper in their passport, people without status have been left destitute, homeless, and afraid or unable to get help during the pandemic.

We need accountability, and change. The public inquiry into the Government handling of COVID is getting underway now. We are calling on the Chair to make sure the experiences of all migrants, including those without status, are part of her investigation.

Dear Lady Hallett,

Congratulations on your appointment to chair the public inquiry into COVID-19. We, the undersigned organisations and individuals, write to encourage the inquiry panel to include migration status and laws affecting migrants as a key factor in the inquiry’s investigation.

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JCWI: ‘We also want to be safe’ – Sign our open letter

19 January 2022: You can sign the Joint Council for the Welfare of Immigrants – JCWI letter as an individual or organisation – QARN has signed this letter: ‘We also want to be safe’ – Sign our open letter

Faced with COVID, the Government should have done everything in its power to ensure everyone had support. Everyone needs a way to earn a living, access to the public safety net if they need it, safe accommodation, and access to vaccines and the NHS.

But Hostile Environment policies cut undocumented migrants off from these basic rights. Because they don’t have the right piece of paper in their passport, people without status have been left destitute, homeless, and afraid or unable to get help during the pandemic.

We need accountability, and change. The public inquiry into the Government handling of COVID is getting underway now. We are calling on the Chair to make sure the experiences of all migrants, including those without status, are part of her investigation.

Scroll down to add your name to our open letter today, to be part of the movement calling for change. 

Read more and sign here: https://www.jcwi.org.uk/migrants-covid-inquiry

Churches Refugee Network Advisory Group Bulletin

24 January 2022: Keep informed about developments and activities linked to immigration, asylum and refugee issues, in a British and Irish context, with this new bulletin from the Churches’ Refugee Network’s (CRN) Advisory Group.

This first edition looks at issues around asylum claims and Christian conversion; explores the lived experience of refugees seeking a better life in Refugee Stories; features the website of the other side of hope , a website for groups who support those seeking asylum; outlines how Catholic primary schools in Birmingham show their solidarity with refugees as Schools of Sanctuary; and details new guidance on language support for those seeking to settle in London and surrounding areas.

Extract – from Barbara Forbes, who is also the QARN representative at CRN:

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Impact of Covid-19 on migrants

Updated 19 January 2021: JCWI: “We also want to be safe” – undocumented migrants facing COVID in a Hostile Environment

Executive Summary

This report explores undocumented migrants’ experiences of the COVID pandemic. It focuses on financial security, work, housing and access to healthcare, and highlights how in all these areas, the Government’s Hostile Environment policies have exacerbated the effects of the COVID crisis for undocumented people.

Download the report

Take action to make sure the COVID inquiry includes migrants

Read more here: https://www.jcwi.org.uk/we-also-want-to-be-safe-report

You can sign the JCWI letter: ‘We also want to be safe’ – Sign our open letter

Faced with COVID, the Government should have done everything in its power to ensure everyone had support. Everyone needs a way to earn a living, access to the public safety net if they need it, safe accommodation, and access to vaccines and the NHS.

But Hostile Environment policies cut undocumented migrants off from these basic rights. Because they don’t have the right piece of paper in their passport, people without status have been left destitute, homeless, and afraid or unable to get help during the pandemic.

We need accountability, and change. The public inquiry into the Government handling of COVID is getting underway now. We are calling on the Chair to make sure the experiences of all migrants, including those without status, are part of her investigation.

Scroll down to add your name to our open letter today, to be part of the movement calling for change. 

Read more and sign here: https://www.jcwi.org.uk/migrants-covid-inquiry

Continue reading “Impact of Covid-19 on migrants”

Changing the Conversation on Asylum

Freedom From Torture: Changing the Conversation on Asylum: A Messaging Guide

Freedom from Torture is proud to launch ‘Changing the Conversation on Asylum: A Messaging Guide’, a new report based on research into the most persuasive narratives around refugee rights in the UK.

This messaging guide is a tool to help the refugee and migrant advocacy sector to think tactically, play to our strengths and win.

In this new guide, we take a look at the methodology and messages that can help us carve out a new approach that will be successful in persuading the public that seeking safety is a fundamental human right.

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‘Off-shoring’ people seeking asylum is not a new idea

Floating barriers, wave machines, old ferries, shipping people to far away places … Out of sight, out of mind!

The ‘backlog’ can be dealt with by giving people Leave to Remain now. This post is also uploaded to the http://statusnow4all.org website.

Updated 17 January 2022: City AM: Army to take control as govt plans to order Royal Navy to stop Channel migrants and fly asylum seekers to Rwanda and Ghana

The Prime Minister is planning to slow the flow of migrants into the UK by calling in the army and fly asylum seekers to a number of African countries, including Ghana and Rwanda, to process their applications there.

According to a report in The Times this morning, Boris Johnson plans to give the Royal Navy ‘primacy’ over all government-run and owned vessels in the Channel later this month.

A rear admiral will reportedly be given the powers to oversee the Border Force, coastguard, fisheries protection and customs and excise to carry out surveillance or intercept migrants that attempt to cross the Channel.

Read more: https://www.cityam.com/army-to-take-control-as-govt-plans-to-order-royal-navy-to-stop-channel-migrants-and-fly-asylum-seekers-to-rwanda-and-ghana/

See how Governments think it will work! …

Allan Olingo@allanolingo: RWANDA rejects 250,000 Covid-19 vaccines from Denmark over claims the donation was attached to Kigali accepting to host asylum centres for Denmark. The two countries’ officials met in September 2021 but Kigali has since rejected the vaccines and proposal-Danish media reports.” https://mobile.twitter.com/allanolingo/status/1482648556607524865

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