11 December 2023: The Bureau Investigates: Ban on Family Members ‘Will Force Migrant Care Workers Into Poverty’
26 June 2023: Relief Web: Number of People Living in Modern Slavery Has Grown Since 2018
The Global Slavery Index reveals the number of people living in modern slavery has grown since 2018 against a backdrop of increasing and more complex conflicts, widespread environmental degradation, climate-induced migration, a global rollback of women’s rights, and the economic and social impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic.
The latest Global Slavery Index, produced by human rights group Walk Free, reveals the 10 countries with the highest prevalence of modern slavery are North Korea, Eritrea, Mauritania, Saudi Arabia, Türkiye, Tajikistan, United Arab Emirates, Russia, Afghanistan, and Kuwait.Continue reading “Modern Slavery and Trafficking”
Mirror: EXCLUSIVE: Horrific levels of violence and racism among immigration staff as suspensions double
Exclusive figures obtained by the Sunday Mirror have shown a sharp rise in the number of immigration staff who are being investigated, suspended and losing their jobs.
The number of immigration custody staff suspended last year doubled, an investigation by the Sunday Mirror and Liberty investigates has found.
One officer repeatedly kneed a detainee in the head and told a concerned colleague “there are no cameras”, according to a staff report.
Documents from disciplinary cases obtained by FOI reveal a sharp rise in the number of staff investigated over whether they were “fit and proper” to detain and deport migrants, including vulnerable asylum seekers.
They show 102 staff were suspended between January 2020 and mid-February 2023 – including 49 last year and seven in the first six weeks of 2023.Continue reading “Horrific levels of violence and racism among immigration staff as suspensions double”
PCS are a supporter of the Status Now Network. Here Paul O’Connor Senior National Officer writes about the PCS Campaign
In autumn 2021, PCS was approached by members and representatives in our Home Office South-East England branch who had been asked by the then Home Secretary Priti Patel to carry out a dangerous pushbacks manoeuvre on small boats crossing the English Channel. Our members were clear that they were completely opposed to the policy. They considered it unlawful, morally reprehensible and utterly inhumane.
On the back of that approach, alongside Care4Calais and Channel Rescue, PCS launched a legal challenge against the policy via judicial review. The impact of this coalition should not be underestimated – here we had an organisation representing workers tasked with carrying out a policy; standing shoulder to shoulder in solidarity with organisations representing those affected by the policy – a clear indication of the level of inhumanity that the government is attempting to inflict on refugees.Continue reading “Paul O’Connor Senior National Officer writes about the PCS Campaign “
Refugee Week 2023: 19-25:
Read more here: https://refugeeweek.org.uk/events
19 June 2023 6-8pm London: Migrant Voice: London film screening: “MATAR” and “AYMAN”
To mark Refugee Week, Migrant Voice and the University of Westminster are hosting an evening of award-winning film and discussion on 19 June at the University’s Regent Street campus. We will screen two powerful short films, MATAR and AYMAN, followed by a panel discussion and Q&A.Continue reading “Some Refugee Week events 2023”
4 April 2023: ICIBI: Please note the ICIBI’s intended inspection regime for the coming year: 2023-24
This includes Rwanda ‘Country of Origin’ information that guides the Home Office staff in decision-making, trafficking, contingency accommodation, treatment of people arriving by small boats, age assessments, and adults at risk in detention
Updates will appear below.Continue reading “ICIBI Inspection Plan 2023 – 24”
22 June 2023: FP: The EU rails against people smugglers, but its draconian policies keep them in business.
In Europe, we take photos of migrants before they die.
On June 13, aircraft from both the European border agency Frontex and the Greek coast guard equipped with cameras flew around a dangerously overcrowded fishing vessel around 50 miles off the coast of Pylos, a town on Greece’s southern Peloponnese peninsula. On June 14, by the time the ghostly images had circulated online, most people in the photos had perished after the boat capsized. But even before we knew who they were, and who had survived, Greek authorities very quickly made it known that the people on the boat had “refused assistance,” as their goal was apparently to continue sailing to Italy.Continue reading “Europe’s Migration Apartheid Is Killing Asylum Seekers”
9 June 2023: Immigration Law Practitioners Association – ILPA: Date published: 12 June 2023
With many thanks to all members who contributed to this written evidence, ILPA’s Response to the ICIBI’s Call for Evidence: An Inspection of Asylum Casework 2023 can be read below. [Document Date: Friday June 9, 2023]Continue reading “ILPA’s Response to the ICIBI’s Call for Evidence: An Inspection of Asylum Casework”
15 June 2023: North African migrant solidarity organisations convene in Morocco to mark the anniversary of the Melillia-Nador massacre
Civil society action in solidarity with migrants in the Maghreb (North Africa) region has increased over the last year, with activity in Tunisia and Morocco in particular strengthening in response to negative developments on the part of the respective national governments.
The development of this work will take a big step forward over the coming week as representatives of migrant and North African diaspora associations convene in the Moroccan city of Nador for the fifth Maghreb Social Forum on Migration. Gathering under the slogan: “Never again “Bario Chino”, the Forum will coincide with the first anniversary of the massacre at the border crossing between Morocco and Spanish enclave city of Melilla in which at least 37 migrants died in a crush resulting from an attach of the Moroccan police.
Calling for a Maghreb “free of hatred, xenophobia and racism” this Forum follows similar events mobilising migrant and antiracist activists in North Africa and across the European diaspora. Previous sessions took place in Brussels (2010), Oujda (2012), Monastir (2014) and Tangiers (2016).
Three main themes have been selected for the Forum. These are:Continue reading “North African migrant solidarity organisations convene in Morocco to mark the anniversary of the Melillia-Nador massacre”
15 June 2023: Don Flynn’s Migration Commentary: A brief history of managed migration (and why it isn’t an easy alternative to free movement)
‘Managed migration’ has been the official goal of government policy since the late 1990s. It has gone down a confused, stumbling road, requiring constant revision and return to legislation in order to resolve its innumerable internal tensions and conflicts.
The central idea is that migration is linked to strategies for economic growth, with the numbers of people being admitted linked to perceptions about what the jobs market needs at any point in time. It is possible to see ‘soft’ and ‘hard’ versions coming into play over the years. The period 2001-05 – associated with David Blunkett’s time at the Home Office – provides the example of soft managed migration, led by the assumption that the strong economic growth of the period would absorb all newcomers into the labour market in a virtuous cycle promoting higher levels of prosperity for all.Continue reading “A brief history of managed migration (and why it isn’t an easy alternative to free movement)”
14 June 2023: RNLI: RNLI releases new figures to highlight crews’ lifesaving impact in the Channel
The Royal National Lifeboat Institution (RNLI) has revealed that its lifeboat crews saved the lives* of 108 people crossing the English Channel last year.
It is the first time the charity that saves lives at sea has published figures for the work of its volunteer crews in the Channel.
In total, the RNLI was tasked and launched 290 times during 2022 to incidents involving men, women and children making the perilous journey across one of the world’s busiest shipping lanes in small, overcrowded and unseaworthy boats.
This figure represents 3% of the total number of lifeboat launches for the whole of the RNLI last year.
RNLI Chief Executive, Mark Dowie, said: ‘We are extremely proud of all our volunteer lifeboat crews throughout the UK, Ireland and Channel Islands and that very much includes those working in challenging circumstances in the south-east of England.
‘We have never released these figures before, but they illustrate clearly that our charity’s work in the Channel is genuinely lifesaving.
‘Sadly we know there have been incidents in the Channel which have resulted in deaths, but without the brave actions of our crews, who are ready to answer their pagers day or night, 365 days a year, we can be certain there would have been more.
‘The RNLI is unashamed and makes no apology for staying committed to and focused on the purpose we were created for, nearly 200 years ago – to save lives at sea.’
The RNLI is tasked and coordinated in the UK by HM Coastguard. If someone is in trouble in the sea, and the RNLI is tasked, the charity will launch to help them without judgement, as its crews have been doing since 1824.Continue reading “Lifeboat crews saved 108 migrants’ lives in 2022 – RNLI”
15 June 2023: Left East: Fighting Structural Invisibility and Precarity: Interview with Julius-Cezar MacQuarie on the Nightworker Charter
[Extract] You have this wonderful insight – namely you talk about the structural invisibility of migrant nightshift workers. It is clear that there is strong anti-migrant propaganda, and a significant portion of the local population is hostile to workers both in the UK and much of Central and Eastern Europe. In the UK, how does this invisibility appear from the perspective of migrant workers? I understand that such invisibility is a conscious choice also of migrant workers. What are the concrete experiences and your insights?Continue reading “Fighting Structural Invisibility and Precarity”
Updated 12 June 2023: Mayor of London: Mayor announces £750,000 new funding to support migrant workers as report reveals ‘shocking’ levels of exploitation
- New report commissioned by the Mayor of London uncovers shocking levels of bullying, racially motivated harassment, and exploitation of migrant workers consistent with modern slavery across London.
- Mayor confirms extension of funding for specialist advice and support services to ensure the most vulnerable migrant Londoners can access their rights – including protection from employment rights violation and exploitation.
- Sadiq urges Government to do more to ensure migrants access their rights, identify abuses, and have access to the support they need
The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, has today announced more than £750,000 additional funding to boost support for migrants in London and tackle the exploitation of migrant workers following a ‘shocking’ report which uncovered widespread abuse.
The new report, commissioned by City Hall, uncovers shocking levels of bullying, racially motivated harassment, and the exploitation of migrants in the workplace consistent with modern slavery.
This investment by the Mayor will support migrants in London with independent immigration advice and support services to help ensure they can access their rights, including protection from employment rights violation and exploitation.Continue reading “Rights and risks: migrant worker exploitation and the barriers to support”
BBC News: Dozens of migrants have been stranded for months on a tiny British territory in the Indian Ocean after being rescued from their struggling fishing boat.
They are desperate to leave for a safe place, describing conditions as hellish, but the unusual legal status of the island has left them feeling frightened and helpless.
All names of the migrants have been changed
Early one morning in October 2021, a fishing boat was spotted struggling near the island of Diego Garcia.
The vessel immediately attracted the attention of the island’s authorities – the territory hosts a secretive UK-US military base, hundreds of miles away from any other population, and unauthorised visitors are forbidden.
It soon became clear that the 89 people on board – Sri Lankan Tamils who said they were fleeing persecution – weren’t actually intending to land on the island.Continue reading “BBC: Diego Garcia: The tropical island ‘hell’ for dozens of stranded migrants”
12 June 2023: Morning Star: BFAWU Conference 2023: Campaigner slams institutional racism of Britain’s asylum system
BRITAIN’S deliberately hostile asylum system is institutionally racist and designed to keep people down, a former claimant forced to navigate it warned today.
Loraine Masiya Mponela, who spent years in the system before finally winning settled status last year, said she could testify to the pain and suffering it causes.
She is part of the Status Now 4 All campaign, which wants ministers to grant every “undocumented, destitute migrant indefinite leave to remain so every human can access the same resources as everyone else.”
The activist, who addressed the Bakers’ Union’s annual conference in Stone, Staffordshire, described the call, backed by more than 150 organisations, as logical, rational and just, adding: “No human should be illegal and subjected to a loss of dignity.
“We must work together to create a Britain that is compassionate and just, a Britain that recognises the inherent wealth and value of all individuals.
“As [US founding father] Benjamin Franklin once said, justice will not be served until those who are unaffected are as outraged as those who are.”
Ms Mponela’s new book of poetry, I Was Not Born a Sad Poet, is available now.