Early Day Motion 1191: Children In Poverty and Free School Meals
That this House is shocked by the statistic that around 700,000 school-age children living in poverty are not receiving free school meals; congratulates the Children's Society for revealing this shameful state of affairs; notes that many working parents below the poverty line are discriminated against by being denied this crucial health benefit for their children because they are employed; further notes that a single parent working for 16 hours a week and a couple working 24 hours, both on working tax credit, cannot qualify, however poor they may be; and calls on the Government to ensure that all school-age children living in poverty receive free school meals whether or not their parents have jobs.
Sponsor: Galloway, George - House of Commons <> 14/03/2013
Early Day Motion 1202: Saudi Arabia Public Executions
That this House is appalled at the continued use of the death penalty in many countries, including Saudi Arabia; is deeply disturbed that public executions are carried out in a country that is a major UK trading partner and regularly receives Ministerial and Royal Family visits; and calls on the Government to make the strongest possible representations to the government of Saudi Arabia expressing its abhorrence at its continued use of the death penalty.
Sponsor: Corbyn, Jeremy - House of Commons: <>14/03/2013
ILPA Info Service: Update 52 and Info Sheets
Family Visit Visa Appeals
New Fees Proposed
Legal Aid Tenders
Fundamental review of the First Tier Tribunal
Can be viewed at: < > http://www.ilpa.org.uk/pages/info-service.html
Information Sheets on the following:
<>Family Tracing: <>Legal aid: <> Family Migration Article 8:
We have also included monitoring forms for legal aid representative and NGO's at: <> http://www.ilpa.org.uk/pages/info-service.html
This was at the request of members to provide a method in which we can monitor the effect of the new legal aid provisions and those clients who we have to turn away as a result of the new provisions. The forms can be used for your own purposes and if you wish to send any completed or part completed to forms to ILPA that would be great.
Sarah Myerscough / Legal Officer, ILPA
Bangladesh: Riots [Deaths at the Hands of the Security Forces]
Lord Avebury to ask Her Majesty's Government what information they have received regarding the number of people killed in recent riots in Bangladesh, and the theft or arson of property belonging to minority communities.
Baroness Warsi: The Government are deeply concerned by reports of the recent violence in Bangladesh. Sadly, there have been more than 70 deaths and many injured as a result of the recent protests. There are reports of 24 Hindu temples, 122 houses and dozens of shops being destroyed across Bangladesh. We deplore attacks on places of worship and private property and have urged the Government to ensure that investigations are conducted and that those responsible are held to account.
Read more: House of Lords / 14 Mar 2013 : Column 346
Rally to Keep Mary Adenugba Safe
7:00pm Friday March 15th 2013
Friends' Meeting House
6 Mount Street, Manchester
RAPAR is holding a public meeting on Friday, March 15th, to highlight the case of Mary Adenugba, who has been in the UK since 2004 and survived years of abuse and exploitation by traffickers before she finally escaped.
Mary, who is from Nigeria, was enslaved in the UK and forced to work as a prostitute in London and Manchester. She is now in the process of seeking asylum and is appealing against the UK Border Agency's decision to refuse her case.
Astonishingly, this decision was made despite the fact that the UKBA has accepted that Mary was trafficked. Her story has also been confirmed by the Eaves' Poppy Project, which specializes in support, advocacy and housing for women who have been trafficked.
As well as focusing on Mary's campaign, the public meeting will look at the wider issue of people trafficked to the UK, often by large networks of organised crime. The meeting comes in the week when a major study entitled "It Happens Here" was published by the Centre for Social Justice.
For more information, please contact
Kath Grant, RAPAR Press Officer, 077 5838 6208
For more details about Mary's campaign, go to <> Rapar
Caste Discrimination to be Outlawed in the UK
"We know in the case of race that nothing has been more effective in reducing racial prejudice than the law. It has had a most powerful educative effect". Lord Harries
Nothing could be more significant and effective in reducing discrimination on the grounds of caste than to have a clear-cut law that discrimination in the public law would not be tolerated".
Amendment 73 was opposed by the government in favour of an education programme to tackle the issue but nine Conservatives and 22 Liberal Democrat peers voted to support the proposed law.
Early Day Motion 1183: Caste Discrimination in the UK
That this House supports the majority vote passed in the House of Lords to outlaw caste discrimination in the UK by including caste as an aspect of race in the Equality Act 2010; notes the UK's international human rights obligations; and calls on the Government to reconsider its position and to uphold the essential British value of equality and justice.
Sponsors: Corbyn, Jeremy/ Bottomley, Peter, Durkan, Mark, McDonnell, John, Sharma, Virendra, Stunell, Andrew
<> House of Commons: 13/03/2013
Amendment 73 - Enterprise and Regulatory Reform Bill
This amendment seeks to add the word "caste" into the Equality Act 2010 and I will very briefly sketch in its background. The Dalit communities in this country, which are about 480,000 strong, have been concerned for some time about discrimination against them. The previous Government, aware of this, introduced an order-making power into the Equality Act 2010 and to assess the evidence commissioned a report from the National Institute for Economic and Social Research. The NIESR concluded that there was discrimination in the areas covered by the Equality Act; namely, education, employment and the provision of public goods and services. It recommended legislation as one of the ways of dealing with this.
The present Government, understandably, wanted time to consider this issue but on Friday gave their response. They recommended that discrimination be tackled by education first rather than by triggering the order-making power in the Act. The Dalit communities in this country are deeply disappointed by this long-awaited response. Indeed, there are more than 400 community leaders from all over the country expressing their feelings outside the House at the moment. I find it disappointing and genuinely distressing because not only are the recommendations a distraction from the real issue but they could cause a great deal of hard feeling and resentment and be seriously counterproductive.
Read more <>House of Lords
UN Say DR Congo Military Units Involved in Mass Rapes
The United Nations has called on the national army of the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) to suspend two of its battalions which, according to investigations, have been involved in mass rapes and other human rights violations. Investigations conducted over the past three months by the UN Organization Stabilization Mission in DRC (MONUSCO) in the town of Minova and surrounding villages found that two units of the Congolese armed forces (FARDC) engaged in mass rapes and other human violations in late November 2012, said UN spokesperson Martin Nesirky.
As a result of these findings, MONUSCO addressed a letter on 4 February to the FARDC's chief of staff requesting the formal suspension of support to these units. It subsequently sent a second and final injunction on 18 February, in line with the UN's Human Rights Due Diligence Policy. "The UN Mission is in touch with Congolese authorities at the highest level to ensure that the alleged perpetrators, including Congolese armed forces commanders, be brought to justice and held accountable," Mr. Nesirky told reporters in New York today. "The Mission will maintain, together with other partners, its support to Congolese judicial authorities to pursue their investigations and will offer its support for any trial to be held.
<> Refworld, 08/03/13
Granted Asylum: Benefits Continue Until Status docs Received
The ASAP briefing on the ILPA website recorded that some recent decisions by the First Tier Tribunal Asylum Support (AST) found that those who are awarded leave to remain should continue to receive asylum support until after they receive their status documents from UKBA.
Read more <>here . . . .
New Evidence of Torture in Iran
The most detailed forensic evidence of torture yet to have emerged from Iran's recent history has been published today in Freedom from Torture's new research report: '"We will make you regret everything" Torture in Iran since the 2009 elections'.
The report, published on the same day that the UN Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in the Islamic Republic of Iran presents to the Human Rights Council in Geneva, is a systematic study of 50 Iranian torture cases, from 2009-2011, documented by clinicians from Freedom from Torture's Medico Legal Reports Service.
The cases all involve torture perpetrated in the lead up to and in the weeks, months and years following Iran's presidential elections held on 12 June 2009. Together they provide an alarming insight into the brutal methods used by the Iranian authorities to terrorise those individuals – and their family members – engaged in grassroots organising prior to the elections and in the protests relating to the disputed outcome and the human rights abuses that followed.
Read more: Freedom from Torture, 11/03/13
Man Dies in G4S Ambulance Due To 'Insufficient' Staff Training
G4S manage Brook House IRC and Tinsley House IRCs
A double amputee died when his unsecured wheelchair tipped over backwards as he was being transported to hospital in an ambulance operated by under-fire outsourcing firm G4S. An inquest jury found that the driver and staff of the security firm had not received sufficient training to move patients safely between their homes, hospitals and clinics.
Retired newsagent Palaniappan Thevarayan, 47, suffered fatal head injuries when his wheelchair came loose from the floor clamps in the back of the vehicle taking him to St Helier Hospital, in Sutton, Surrey, from a dialysis centre in Epsom hospital in May 2011. The jury at Westminster Magistrates Court this week heard that driver John Garner, who had worked for the company since 2005, and fellow G4S staff had not had their manual handling training updated since 2009.
<> Jonathan Brown, Independent, Friday 08 March 2013
Feel Free to Insult, Cameron, Clegg, the Queen, Pope Francis et al
Conviction of political activist for insulting the French President infringed his freedom of expression In Chamber judgment in the case of Eon v. France (application no. 26118/10), which is not final, the European Court of Human Rights held, by a majority, that there had been: a violation of Article 10 (freedom of expression) of the European Convention on Human Rights.
The case concerned the applicant's conviction for insulting the President of France. During a visit by the President to the département of Mayenne, the applicant had waved a placard reading "Casse toi pov'con" ("Get lost, you sad prick"), a phrase uttered by the President himself several months previously.
The Court held that criminal penalties for conduct such as that displayed by the applicant were likely to have a chilling effect on satirical contributions to discussion of matters of public interest, such discussion being fundamental to a democratic society.
101 Deaths in DR Congo Detention Centres in 2012
A United Nations report released today shows that the number of deaths in detention in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) nearly doubled in 2012, and the conditions in which prisoners live remain extremely poor in the majority of the detention centres.
The report, which is the result of investigations carried out by the UN Joint Human Rights Office in the DRC, found that in 54 civilians died in detention centres in 2010, and 56 in 2011. By comparison, 101 deaths were recorded in 2012.
Out of the 101 deaths, 24 were caused by torture or ill-treatment, a finding that the report describes as "extremely worrying," according to a news release. The other deaths were caused by the poor conditions in the centres, including overcrowding, malnutrition, limited access to health care and lack of resources.
"Someone deprived of their liberty, should never be allowed to die of hunger or ill-treatment," said the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, Navi Pillay. "It is the responsibility of the State to keep prisoners alive and in good health, in accordance with international standards. The very serious and persistent problems surrounding detention conditions in the DRC need to be addressed without further delay."
Read more: UN News Centre <> 13/03/01
Bangladesh [ongoing violent protests in Bangladesh]
Lord Hussain to ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of the human rights situation in Bangladesh, in the light of recent reports of fatal shootings of demonstrators by Bangladeshi police; and whether they have made representations to the Government of that country encouraging them to exercise restraint.
The Senior Minister of State, Department for Communities and Local Government & Foreign and Commonwealth Office (Baroness Warsi): The Government are very concerned about the ongoing violent protests in Bangladesh. We have called for restraint both publicly and privately with the Bangladesh Government. Our high commissioner in Dhaka, Robert Gibson, met with the Bangladesh Government, including the Foreign Minister, Dipu Moni, this week to raise our concerns. He also released a statement on 3 March expressing sadness over the violence and the deaths that have taken place across Bangladesh recently.
All citizens have a right to hold their Government to account, including through legitimate and peaceful protests. But violence and vandalism have no place in legitimate protests. The economic and social cost of strikes and other forms of disruption is damaging to individuals, business, and the nation. As I said when I visited Bangladesh in February, I hope that parties can resolve their differences through dialogue and discussion and that citizens are able to freely raise their concerns or grievances through peaceful means, without fear of retaliation or attack.
<> House of Lords / 11 Mar 2013 : Column WA3
Hassanat Aliyu and her Daughters Have Left the UK
"My children do not know where they are, we can't stay in Nigeria. Why has the British government treated us like this?" Hassanat speaking from Nigeria. Tyneside Community Action Against Racism would like to thank everyone who has been involved in this public, political campaign to stop their deportation. This is a very sad time for us all. We must remember that with one person being deported from Britain every eight minutes. We need to continue campaigning against all removals from the UK.
'Shameful' Failure To Tackle Slavery/Human Trafficking in the UK
Ministers, the police and social workers have been accused of a "shocking" failure to prevent the spread of modern slavery in the UK, leading to sexual exploitation, forced labour and the domestic servitude of adults and children from across the world.
Describing government ministers as "clueless" in their response to tackling human trafficking, both into and within the UK, the most exhaustive inquiry yet conducted into the phenomenon concludes that the approach to eradicating modern slavery is fundamentally wrong-headed. Instead of helping vulnerable victims who are trapped into forms of slavery after being trafficked from overseas, the legal system prosecutes many for immigration offences.
Inquiry outlines 80 recommendations, including appointing an independent commissioner and new legislation to protect victims
Read more: <>The Observer, 09/03/13