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No-Deportations - Residence Papers for All
Monday 18th October to Sunday 24th October 2021
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Trafficked Asylum Seekers Must be Given Permission to Stay

The decision in R (KTT) v Secretary of State for the Home Department [2021] EWHC 2722 (Admin), widely reported in the mainstream press this week, is a massive result for trafficking victims. The High Court has concluded that a trafficking victim who is also an asylum seeker must be granted permission to stay (“leave to remain”) in the UK. It is one of those rare judgments where victory on some esoteric legal issues will have huge real-world effects.

International law protection for trafficked asylum seekers: The case centred around the meaning of Article 14(1)(a) of the Convention on Action against Trafficking in Human Beings, usually known as ECAT. It states: Each party shall issue a renewable residence permit to victims, in one or other of the two following situations or in both: (a) the competent authority considers that their stay is necessary owing to their personal situation.
It has been long-standing Home Office policy to delay considering victims for a grant of permission to stay until after any claim for asylum has been resolved, and then to grant permission only in very restrictive circumstances. People awaiting an asylum decision, even if they are confirmed victims of trafficking, are rarely allowed to work.

Read more: Freemovement, https://is.gd/6vGxqb


National Security Court Backs Refugee in Secret Ruling

There is little that can sensibly be said about RT v SSHD SN/72/2019, heard by the Special Immigration Appeals Commission (SIAC). In making its decision, SIAC rejected all of RT’s grounds for judicial review, but found in his favour anyway on the basis of secret evidence. The claimant, a refugee from Algeria, challenged the refusal of his naturalisation application. The Home Office had rejected it on national security grounds but provided extremely limited reasons — the refusal letter simply stated that RT “may be supportive of acts of terrorism”.

SIAC found that there were reasons for the decision; RT just wasn’t entitled to know what they were. Under SIAC’s special procedural rules, the Home Office is permitted to present secret evidence in “closed” proceedings. This undoubtedly places claimants and appellants at an unfair disadvantage. Only RT’s special advocate, a lawyer appointed for him and vetted by the government, is allowed to see the secret evidence. He or she cannot discuss it with RT or his lawyers. RT’s special advocate seemed to spot two reasons on the secret evidence that the decision should be quashed. But since SIAC’s judgment on the secret evidence is itself secret, we cannot know what these reasons are: Despite our dismissal of all five OPEN grounds of appeal, and for reasons contained in our CLOSED judgment, we have concluded that the decision must nonetheless be quashed and remitted to the [Home Secretary]. The case does, however, demonstrate just how opaque SIAC proceedings can be.

Read more: Freemovement, https://is.gd/FUKeEI


Nationality and Borders Bill Biggest Ever Legal Assault On Refugee Law

A comprehensive joint legal opinion authored by four barristers finds that the Nationality and Borders Bill is the biggest ever legal assault on international refugee law by the UK and would breach the Refugee Convention and the European Convention on Human Rights (ECHR). The joint opinion was commissioned by Freedom from Torture. In the opinion's introduction, the barristers say: "In our view, this Bill represents the biggest legal assault on international refugee law ever seen in the UK. This is because (a) the principle at the heart of the Bill is the penalisation, both criminally and administratively, of those who arrive by irregular means in the UK to claim asylum and (b) the Bill seeks to reverse a number of important decisions of the UK Courts, including at the House of Lords and Court of Appeal level, given over the last 20 years, without offering any justification for doing so. These are decisions where the Secretary of State lost the legal argument and which concern questions of international refugee law rather than domestic statutory provisions."

The opinion outlines at least seven reasons why the Bill's proposals to criminalise asylum seekers arriving in the UK without permission is wrong as a matter of international refugee law.

Read more: EIN, https://is.gd/t6WXJI


Plans to Hand Over NHS Data to Police Sparks Warning From Government Adviser

Plans to force the NHS to share confidential data with police forces across England are “very problematic” and could see patients giving false information to doctors, the government’s data watchdog has warned. In her first national interview, the data guardian for England told The Independent she has serious concerns over Home Office plans to impose a responsibility on the NHS to share patient data with police which she said “sets aside” the duty of confidentiality for clinicians. Dr Nicola Byrne also warned that emergency powers brought in to allow the sharing of data to help tackle the spread of Covid-19 could not run on indefinitely after they were extended to March 2022.

Dr Byrne, 46, who has had a 20-year career in mental health, also warned against the lack of regulation over the way companies were collecting, storing and sharing patient data via health apps. She told The Independent she had raised concerns with the government over clauses in the Police, Crime, Sentencing and Courts Bill which is going through the House of Lords later this month. The legislation could impose a duty on NHS bodies to disclose private patient data to police to prevent serious violence and crucially sets aside a duty of confidentiality on clinicians collecting information when providing care. Dr Byrne said doing so could “erode trust and confidence, and deter people from sharing information and even from presenting for clinical care”. She added that it was not clear what exact information would be covered by the bill: “The case isn’t made as to why that is necessary. These things need to be debated openly and in public.” Opinion polls commissioned by the data guardian since 2018 have shown a high level of concern by the public about their health data falling into the wrong hands.

Read more: Shaun Lintern, Independent, https://is.gd/a5nUOe


EU Law Precludes a Member State From Declaring an Application for Protection Inadmissible When the Applicant Already Has Refugee Status Granted In Another Member State

The fundamental right to respect for family life, assessed in conjunction with the obligation to take into consideration the best interests of the child, can justify the admissibility of such an application and the examination of its substance. After obtaining refugee status in Austria, a Syrian national travelled to Belgium to join his two daughters, one of whom was a minor and both of whom have subsidiary protection status, and submitted a new application for international protection there. That application was declared inadmissible on the ground that he had already been granted refugee status in the first Member State under the Belgian legislation resulting from the transposition of Directive 2013/32/EU of the European Parliament and of the Council of 26 June 2013 on common procedures for granting and withdrawing international protection.

In his Opinion delivered today, Advocate General Prit Pikamäe takes the view that EU law precludes a Member State from finding that an application for refugee status is inadmissible on the ground that the applicant has previously been granted such status by another Member State when that applicant runs a serious risk of being subjected, in the event of his or her return to that other Member State, to treatment incompatible with the right to respect for family life, provided for in Article 7 of the Charter, read in conjunction with the obligation to take into consideration the best interests of the child, enshrined in Article 24 thereof, as well as in all the legal instruments that make up the Common European Asylum System.

Read the full judgement: https://is.gd/9lfXFr


 

What are Children’s Rights to Apply to Remain After Seven Years’ Residence?

From a child’s perspective, seven years of residence in the UK can be literally a lifetime. It may be the sum of all the child’s experience and the UK may be the only home they know in any meaningful sense. On top of that, children do not make their own decisions about moving homes and countries. To put it another way, whilst adults make informed choices about where to live, children have to cope with the consequences of other people’s choices.

Paragraph 276ADE(1)(iv) of the Immigration Rules provides that a child may be granted permission to stay on the basis of their Article 8 right to a private life where: They are under 18 - They have lived continuously in the UK for at least seven years (discounting any periods of imprisonment) - It wouldn’t be reasonable to expect them to leave the UK - Where the parents have no separate right to remain in the UK under the Immigration Rules — which is in nearly all of these seven year cases — then the Home Office almost always decides that it would be reasonable for the child to accompany his or her parents back to the country of nationality.

Read more: Freemovement, https://is.gd/kzoEXk


UK Threatens to Suspend Visas For Countries ‘Not Cooperating’ With Deportation

Concerns that powers enabling home secretary to ‘blackmail’ countries into accepting returns could provoke tit-for-tat visa suspensions targeting British citizens. The government is threatening to stop granting visas to citizens of countries that are “not cooperating” with attempted deportations from the UK. Proposals contained in amendments to the controversial Nationality and Borders Bill would allow Priti Patel to slow or suspend visa services, or increase charges, based on her “opinion” and any matters she “considers appropriate”. Some have described such actions as a form of blackmail.

Campaigners described the power to suspend visas as “simply oppressive”, and there are concerns that such measures could spark tit-for-tat diplomatic retaliation, affecting British citizens wanting to travel for work, holidays or to see family. The law, being added to the bill more than three months after it was published, would apply if countries refused to take back failed asylum seekers, foreign national offenders, or those deemed to have no legal right to remain in the UK. The Home Office has not said how many people they are unable to deport because of a lack of cooperation, or specified which countries are not cooperating. Other government amendments to the bill, revealed on Friday, include the proposed use of X-rays on asylum seekers accused of lying about their age, in order to “scientifically” assess how old they are.

Lizzie Dearden, Independent, https://is.gd/u6cufn


EU Law Precludes a Member State From Declaring an Application for Protection Inadmissible When the Applicant Already Has Refugee Status Granted In Another Member State

The fundamental right to respect for family life, assessed in conjunction with the obligation to take into consideration the best interests of the child, can justify the admissibility of such an application and the examination of its substance. After obtaining refugee status in Austria, a Syrian national travelled to Belgium to join his two daughters, one of whom was a minor and both of whom have subsidiary protection status, and submitted a new application for international protection there. That application was declared inadmissible on the ground that he had already been granted refugee status in the first Member State under the Belgian legislation resulting from the transposition of Directive 2013/32/EU of the European Parliament and of the Council of 26 June 2013 on common procedures for granting and withdrawing international protection.

In his Opinion delivered today, Advocate General Prit Pikamäe takes the view that EU law precludes a Member State from finding that an application for refugee status is inadmissible on the ground that the applicant has previously been granted such status by another Member State when that applicant runs a serious risk of being subjected, in the event of his or her return to that other Member State, to treatment incompatible with the right to respect for family life, provided for in Article 7 of the Charter, read in conjunction with the obligation to take into consideration the best interests of the child, enshrined in Article 24 thereof, as well as in all the legal instruments that make up the Common European Asylum System.

Read the full judgement: https://is.gd/9lfXFr


UK Threatens to Suspend Visas For Countries ‘Not Cooperating’ With Deportation

Concerns that powers enabling home secretary to ‘blackmail’ countries into accepting returns could provoke tit-for-tat visa suspensions targeting British citizens. The government is threatening to stop granting visas to citizens of countries that are “not cooperating” with attempted deportations from the UK. Proposals contained in amendments to the controversial Nationality and Borders Bill would allow Priti Patel to slow or suspend visa services, or increase charges, based on her “opinion” and any matters she “considers appropriate”. Some have described such actions as a form of blackmail.

Campaigners described the power to suspend visas as “simply oppressive”, and there are concerns that such measures could spark tit-for-tat diplomatic retaliation, affecting British citizens wanting to travel for work, holidays or to see family. The law, being added to the bill more than three months after it was published, would apply if countries refused to take back failed asylum seekers, foreign national offenders, or those deemed to have no legal right to remain in the UK. The Home Office has not said how many people they are unable to deport because of a lack of cooperation, or specified which countries are not cooperating. Other government amendments to the bill, revealed on Friday, include the proposed use of X-rays on asylum seekers accused of lying about their age, in order to “scientifically” assess how old they are.

Lizzie Dearden, Independent, https://is.gd/u6cufn


Priti Patel to Give Immunity to Border Force Officials Turning Back Migrant Boats

Border Force staff could be offered immunity when turning back migrant boats in the Channel. According to a report in the Guardian, Home Office officials have confirmed that Priti Patel is seeking to introduce a provision in the nationality and borders bill to give officials legal protection in the event of migrants drowning.

According to Home Office figures, more than 18,000 people have made the crossing from France to England in small boats this year, compared to just over 8,460 in 2020. It was reported by BBC News that 11 boats with 364 migrants on board crossed the English Channel to reach Kent on Sunday and a further 40 on Friday and Saturday with 1,115 people making the journey. There had been nearly 300 arrests and 65 convictions related to small-boat crossings so far this year.

Under controversial bill, presently at committee stage, an asylum seeker who arrives in the UK without prior authorisation would face up to four years in prison. ‘Whether the provision, tucked away in an obscure corner of the bill, would actually protect officers from conviction under international maritime laws could be tested in the courts,’ writes Rajeev Syal, the Guardian’s home affairs editor.

Read more: Jon Robins, Justice Gap, https://is.gd/G1jozP


High Court Rules Trafficking Victims Can Stay in UK

In a landmark judgement, the High Court on Tuesday 12th Ocotber 2021, ruled that victims of human trafficking should be granted leave to remain. This is a significant departure to the current system, whereby individuals who had been subject to human trafficking could be placed in the immigration system for lengthy periods of time while their cases were pending. In many cases, if the Home Office refused to grant leave to remain, victims would be sent back to their home countries, which may place them at risk of being re-trafficked. The majority of individuals seeking asylum in the UK are ineligible for benefits, and are prohibited from working or studying while their case is being reviewed. The High Court ruling would mean that victims of trafficking will be granted leave to remain if the Home Office does not appeal the decision.

For victims of trafficking, this is undoubtedly a major relief for those who wish to stay in the UK. The number of people this ruling affects is estimated to be in the thousands. The Home Office has until the 19th October to lodge an application to appeal the judgement. The ruling came about as a result of a legal challenge brought to the court by a Vietnamese woman who was herself a victim of trafficking and whose asylum case was ongoing. Between November 2016 and March 2018, she was trafficked and forced to work against her will in brothels and producing cannabis. In April 2018, she was officially recognised as a human trafficking victim, yet was charged with conspiring to produce cannabis in October 209 and was sentenced to 28 months’ imprisonment. Her immigration lawyers submitted a trafficking assessment referral in May 2019 but the Home Office stated they had no record of her. In July 2019, her records were found by the Home Office, yet in October 2019, she was detained in immigration detention.

Read more: IAS, https://is.gd/ZsytOn


 


 

 

Opinions Regarding Immigration Bail


36 Deaths Across the UK Detention Estate

UK Human Rights and Democracy 2020


Hunger Strikes in Immigration Detention

Charter Flights January 2016 Through December 2020


A History of
NCADC


Immigration Solicitors

Villainous Mr O