|Welcome to this edition of SNN newsletter where we are covering a number of items that will be of interest to everyone involved in migrant and refugee solidarity work.|
The first article comments Sunak’s ‘stop small boats’ plan with the ‘illegal migration bill’.
The second highlights how the government’s aim is not to ‘stop the small boats’, but to stop people asking for refugee status in the UK and invite the workers’ and antiracist movements to further mobilize together against the government’s cruel antirefugee policy.
Our third article reports the result of a recent research that shows how the 10-year route is a ‘punishing process’ that reduces immigrants in misery.
Children and the hostile environment is the topic of our fourth article that invite to a webinar organized by our signatory Social Scientists Against the Hostile Environment.
Finally, we publish a call from our signatory Migrant Voice to contribute to their forthcoming report on the conditions of asylum seekers in London hotels.
|Sunak’s ‘stop small boats’ plan is a desperate gamble he seems unlikely to win|
12 March 2023: The “illegal migration bill” places a legal duty on the home secretary to remove anyone who arrives on a small boat, either to Rwanda or another “safe third country”, “as soon as reasonably practicable”.
For this plan to work it will be necessary to detain each and every person arriving in a small boat until their removal can be affected. The logistical problems here are immense. Last year the total entering by this route was 45,756. The figure for the current year is likely to be as high, with over 3,000 arriving since January.
According to the Oxford University Migration Observatory the immigration removal centre estate has a capacity for detaining people in the region of 2,500 places. A further 500 people have been detained in regular prison establishments but the scope for making greater use of these facilities is limited. The statistics provided for the UK in the World Prison Brief shows the prison system already in an overcrowded state, with more than 83.000 people being held across an estate with an official capacity of just over 77,000.
|British unions call for the rights of migrants and refugees|
12 March 2023: As the British economy crashes the government looks for people to blame and refugees pay the price.
Last November PCS and Care4Calais launched a proposal for a Safe Passage for Refugees. Since then, they asked for a meeting with the Home Office to discuss it, but they never received any reply.
Differently to the government’s plans, this proposal would drastically reduce the number of people forced to make the dangerous journey in small boats, break the people smugglers’ business model, and address the UK humanitarian obligations treating refugees with the dignity and respect that they deserve.
|New report condemns 10-year route as ‘a punishing process’|
12 March 2023: The Institute for Public Policy Research, together with the Manchester Immigration Aid Unit and Praxis, has published a report on the workings of the home office’s 10-year route to settlement.
Around 170,000 people currently have leave to remain in the UK under the provisions of this route at the present time. In the main it covers the position of people to whom the home office must grant a residence status of some form in order to comply with obligations under international human rights law. A typical 10-year route residence permit holder would be the parent of a British citizen child, or a child who has lived for more than seven years in the UK.
|Webinar on Monday 17th April from 17:00 to 18:30: Children and the Hostile Environment|
Social Scientists Against The Hostile Environment (SSAHE) is a project of the Special Interest Group (SIG) on Refugees, Migration, and Settlement established by some Fellows of the Academy of Social Sciences (AcSS). As social scientists based in universities and the third sector, SSAHE’s work focuses on issues of racism and migration in the UK and globally. SSAHE believes in a duty as social scientists to use research to inform political debates and to challenge the ‘Hostile Environment’ for migrants produced by current government policy.
During the Covid-19 pandemic, SSAHE began to run a monthly ‘webinar’ where SSAHE members and colleagues in the academy and community organisations came together to present, explore and discuss issues of racism, migration, and migration policy in the UK and globally, in relation to the pandemic and in broader terms. These webinars continue, bi-monthly, now, and frequently attract an audience of up to 100 people.
|Statement about engagement with asylum seekers in London hotels|
Over the past few months Migrant Voice has been engaging with asylum seekers in different hotels around London. As part of that we are preparing a report which captures the challenges and gives some recommendations to improve the conditions in these accommodations and several policy changes. To enrich this report, we are inviting a number of organisations to contribute their experiences in the report. Therefore, we would be delighted if you could and are happy to send Migrant Voice a short-written statement (Maximum 1 page) which includes the following points:What is the nature of your engagement with asylum seekers? What are the challenges you are facing as part of your engagement?From your observations what are the main issues of concern that you see coming out.What recommendations do you have?Are there any good practices which you would like to share? (These could be from Community groups, Local Authorities, Hotels, etc…) N.B ➢ We would recommend that the statement is signed by the head of the organisation or the person in charge of the engagement with the asylum seekers and sent to firstname.lastname@example.org
Join Status Now NetworkWe are looking for volunteers to help develop our work on social media
Fight the anti-refugee laws and stop deportation to Rwanda
Sign and publicise the pledge to defend the rights of asylum seekers to find sanctuary in the UK. Hundreds of organisations (including Status Now) and numerous MPs have already signed it but we need to be more!
Upcoming events16th March 3pm – 7.30pm, Migrant Voice, VAI, 200A Pentonville Road, London N1 9JPMedia Lab Training sessions organised by our signatory Migrant Voice. Learn how to use social media to tell your story and raise awarenessFriday 17 and 24 March, 5.15 – 7.15 pm, Garnethill Multicultural Centre, 21 Rose Street, GlashowCreative Writing for Women
The sessions, organised by Migrant Voice and Povestry, are open to women with the experience of migration: those who moved to Glasgow from elsewhere, those from Glasgow who have lived somewhere else, and those with ancestry in other parts of the world.18th March 2023 – Resist Racism national protest on the UN Anti Racism Day Join the demonstration in London, Cardiff, and Glasgow28th March 4.30pm – 8.30pm, Migrant Voice, Glasgow (venue TBC)Media Lab Training sessions organised by our signatory Migrant Voice. Learn how to use social media to tell your story and raise awareness17 April 5 -6.30 pm, onlineChildren and the Hostile Environment
Please have a look at the website and send us your stories if we have missed them. The website is one of our outfacing sources of information, alongside Facebook and Twitter. Amongst other information you will find new and updated posts, our statements and related Early Day Motions, the Faith Calling Card, information for local councils, Trades Unions and political organisations.
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