People falsely accused of cheating on TOEIC tests, threatened with being removed from UK

9 February 2022: Status Now signatory Migrant Voice exposes another Home Office process that violates people with precarious status:

Migrant Voice: A preview of international student Noman ‘Nomi’ Raja speaking to BBC Newsnight about the turmoil caused by the UK government’s #HostileEnvironment after he was falsely accused of cheating on a #TOEIC test, arrested and threatened with deportation to Pakistan. https://www.facebook.com/watch/?v=361018352218599

BBC News report on a BBC Newsnight investigation by correspondent Richard Watson into new evidence revealing international #TOEIC students accused of cheating were falsely targeted, arrested and threatened with deportation. The special in-depth report will feature on #BBCNewsnight on Wednesday 9 February, at 10.45pm (BBC TWO).

Migrant Voice has been exposing this scandal over time – see here for their reports: https://www.migrantvoice.org/search?searchword=toeic, also

Migrant Voice: New evidence boosts students’ campaign for justice

A BBC investigation aired on news bulletins and on Newsnight today turns a spotlight back onto one of the most scarring miscarriages of justice in modern British history.

A report on the BBC website says its investigation ”has raised fresh doubts about the evidence used to throw thousands of people out of the UK for allegedly cheating in an English language test”.

It says its findings are based on “whistleblower testimony and official documents obtained by Newsnight that reveal the Home Office has continued to try to remove people based on the claims of the international testing organisation ETS – despite knowing of serious concerns about its conduct and flaws in its data.”

Migrant Voice has been campaigning for years with some of the students who decided to stay in the UK – despite being barred from working, studying, renting accommodation or accessing health services. Many became destitute and suffered severe mental health problems.

Welcoming BBC coverage “of this egregious injustice”, Migrant Voice Director Nazek Ramadan said: “Though some students have managed to stay in the country, trying desperately to fight the issue in the courts, this has proved an insufficient remedy.  It is available only to those very few affected students able to endure living with no rights and legal status for many years while trying to raise tens of thousands of pounds to fight complicated legal battles. 

“Even when the students win, they find that they cannot get their place at university back, nor all the money they spent on fees and lawyers, but they have lost what should have been the best years of their lives”. 

She said eight years is a shamefully long time for the government to continue ignoring its responsibility for creating this injustice and refusing to right the wrong, and added: “It must put an end to this injustice and create a simple, clear process to enable the students to clear their names and get their futures back.

“I hope the programme will reinforce the MyFutureBack campaign and perhaps be a turning point.”

https://youtu.be/7T9oUZNmofY (Uploaded to YouTube by MV)


BBC: The English test that ruined thousands of lives

A BBC investigation has raised fresh doubts about the evidence used to throw thousands of people out of the UK for allegedly cheating in an English language test.

Whistleblower testimony and official documents obtained by Newsnight reveal the Home Office has continued to try to remove people based on the claims of the international testing organisation ETS – despite knowing of serious concerns about its conduct and flaws in its data.

More than 2,500 people were deported and at least 7,200 more were forced to leave Britain after ETS accused them of cheating in an exam it set and marked. Others who remain in the UK continue to fight to clear their names after enduring years of hardship.

‘A BBC investigation has raised fresh doubts about the evidence used to throw thousands of people out of the UK for allegedly cheating in an English language test.Finding themselves unwelcome both in Britain and back home was devastating for those affected, said Nazek Ramadan, director of the charity Migrant Voice. “Most of them have mental health issues and some were on medication to stop them killing themselves,” she said.’

Read more: https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-60264106

Here is the programme: