Speaking for Ourselves

From protection to deterrence

From protection to deterrence


 Migrant Voice - From protection to deterrence

The UK Government’s plan to turn people into human cargo and send them against their will to Rwanda is chilling.

It would effectively end the UK’s participation in the United Nations Refugee Convention, moving Britain away from protecting refugees to deterring them.

The Government is seeking, by any means and at almost any cost, to avoid its international responsibilities while demanding other countries take theirs.

Much of the Government’s rhetoric is about legal routes for those seeking asylum, but safe legal routes are not available to all who need them. The legal routes are selective, limited and restricted. Even those set up for Ukrainians and Afghans have not been functioning properly.

If the plan to move people the UK doesn’t want to Rwanda is implemented, where does it end? Who will be next on the list for exile? 

A complete reset in thinking is required. Scrap the mean-spirited, inhumane approach encapsulated in the “hostile environment”, and replace it with a positive mindset that seeks to help people in need and fulfils our international responsibilities.

Ukraine shows it can be done: under public pressure the Government admitted the cruelty of its red-tape restrictions, stopped directing refugees to Calais and at least began the process of facilitating passage to Britain. 

It should be doing the same for others looking for safety, whatever their skin colour or religion.

Photo credit: Daniel Arauz resized and licensed for use under Creative Commons CC BY 2.0

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