StatusNow editorial: WE know that the Emperor has no clothes

WE know that the Emperor has no clothes[1]

2021’s end of year ‘holiday’ period has to be the strangest ever. In the UK and Ireland an unknown number of people are entering this period of the COVID19 syndemic[2]  without one or more of these fundamentals: safe rooves over our heads, heat and food to warm and fuel our bodies, and internet connected devices that maintain our abilities to communicate beyond our physical placement.  The Status Now Network(SNN) remains acutely conscious that – whether we do or we don’t have precarious immigration status – many people are being denied fundamental human needs. 

This fact, that people in the here and now are being denied access to fundamental human needs, is not new.  The fact that we in SNN and so very many who are around and about us care deeply[3] about that denial, and the fact that we trust in our abilities to expose and resist all attempts to grind away, and thereby blunt, our commitment to achieve StatusNow4All: they aren’t new either.

A reading of the UK Government response of 21st December 2021 to the call for amnesty that was made earlier in the year[4] is one such attempt to grind us.  It asserts a plan for a firm but fair immigration system that consists of:  Attempting to reduce pull factors that cause illegal migration and increase the misery associated with people trafficking…

There are a couple of immediate, glaring and fundamental flaws with this statement:

  1. By their own admission, the ‘pull’ factors that the Home Office refers to as the ‘cause’ of ‘illegal migration’ don’t exist[5].(As of today, 231221, neither does a working link to access the Home Office’s own report about this absence of pull factors that was directly quoted in the 20th November 2021 Guardian article as follows: “They [asylum seekers] are guided more by agents, the presence or absence of family and friends, language, and perceived cultural affinities than by scrutiny of asylum policies or rational evaluation of the welfare benefits on offer.”)
  2. The ‘misery associated with people trafficking’ is made up of a myriad of push factors none of which are separable from the present and historical UK Government’s foreign policy, including its arms trading over very many years[6].  As of now, Britain has the third largest of the top 100 arms share total.  It hosts “the seven UK companies who recorded arms sales of $37.5bn in 2020, up by 6.2 percent compared with 2019. Arms sales by BAE Systems – the sole European firm in the top 10 – increased by 6.6 percent to $24bn.”[7]

WE will be here, part of the growing international organisational solidarity that is essential, until the real reasons for people being pushed from their homelands to the UK and Ireland no longer exist. 

[1] Urban Dictionary: the emporer has no clothes

[2] The State we’re in, it’s a Syn: that’s why we need Status Now 4 All – RAPAR


[4] Amnesty for undocumented migrants after 10 years and reduce 20 year ILR rule – Petitions (

[5] Home Office ‘covering up’ its own study of why refugees come to the UK | Immigration and asylum | The Guardian

[6] CAAT – Government support

[7] Weapons trade booms as profits hit record $531bn in 2020 | Weapons News | Al Jazeera

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