"I have never welcomed the weakening of family ties by politics or pressure" - Nelson Mandela.
"He who travels for love finds a thousand miles no longer than one" - Japanese proverb.
"Everyone has the right to respect for his private and family life, his home and his correspondence." - Article 8 of the European Convention on Human Rights.
"When people's love is divided by law, it is the law that needs to change". -
David Cameron.

Monday 3 June 2013

 Girl, 7, spared deportation to Chile as UK Border Agency drop fight to have her kicked out of Britain.


IMMIGRATION chiefs have dropped their bid to deport Millie Canales - who has lived most of her life in Scotland and speaks no Spanish - to an earthquake zone in Chile.

The case of Millie Canales was highlighted in April by the Daily Record, when we revealed her ­pregnant mum Francisca and Scots stepdad Barry Nicol faced being sent 7500 miles around the globe.

Francisca was first told to leave the UK when she applied to extend her visa last June.

The Home Office based their ­decision on the fact she was no longer living with Millie’s dad, a Spanish national she met in the UK and who now plays no role in Millie’s life.

A nice piece on BritCit Francisca -

'Happy face' crater.

Attract the rich to settle in the UK by auctioning visas, say Tory MPs.


Michael Gove, apparently, 'proposes the marketisation of immigration policy, whereby a British passport could, he suggests, be sold for £10,000. '

What these Tory MPs may not realise is that £10k for a passport is, quite possibly, competitive with the combined costs of application fees, test fees, legal fees, travel costs, and so on of the current process - as well as the opportunity cost of finding it difficult to take full-time employment and even renting because of the fear of draconian fines on employers and possibly landlords - while those affected, who are legally in the UK, are in their five years to Indefinite Leave to Remain.

And with a great deal less uncertainty! As some of the stories under the 'bureaucracy' label below attest :



https://twitter.com/DavidWardMP tweets :
Join me and sign petition calling on the government to change the £18,600 threshold for sponsorship of a spouse visa http://signme.org.uk/811

Ward is an MP who has been involved in campaigning against the rules from the start (see - http://www.parliament.uk/edm/2012-13/335 ). Very happy to see his intervention here - and hope to see him at future campaign events!

Cameron is relenting to backbenchers on immigration policy.


''However, there have been recent examples of Tories willing to stick their heads up above the parapet. Some have acknowledged that immigrants workhard and contribute to society and others have been vocal in support of family migration and specific groups of migrants such as Afghan interpreters resettling to the UK. An increasing number of Tory MPs are also pushing for the relaxation of visas for highly skilled migrants and foreign students. So individuals who would back a progressive line on immigration do exist.'

Migrants Rights Network's parliamentary liaison detects signs of progressive life within parts of the Tory Party (I myself was pleasantly surprised to see David Davis' principled and moral intervention on behalf of Afghan interpreters - http://www.daviddavismp.com/david-davis-news/david-davis-raises-concern-that-afghan-interpreters-most-at-risk-may-face-exclusion/ - http://www.britishfuture.org/articles/afghan-interpreter-deal-will-fail-to-protect-too-many-says-david-davis/ ) so keep an eye on this too!


Fundamentally, a hard line on immigration is out of step with the modern world. It's out of step with our humanitarian values, with the values of family life, with the values of citizenship (as assaults on migrants very quickly become assaults on the rights of citizens), with the rights of workers, with the global trade networks which modern life depends on.

Modern life and probably modern liberal democracy itself depends on the free flow of goods, services and of course people, through emigration and immigration. We live in a global world, and the UK is a global country, and much better for it. There is no way to turn back the clock from these historical forces. Human rights, family life, multiculturalism and the global economy are all important arguments for this.

Unfortunately politicians are very driven by media scares and very few are brave enough to make the case for migration. Instead they react to these scare stories by picking 'scapegoats' who are victimised without really making any difference to the way the world works - just ruining lives. Shamefully.

Legal aid residency tests 'will leave migrant children destitute'.

Children's Society claims proposed changes in the rules could leave trafficked or abandoned children at risk of exploitation.


https://twitter.com/19pst tweets :
If you agree asylum seekers should have clear right to volunteer, please sign @RefugeeAction petition, and share: http://bit.ly/righttovol

Germany's one million new migrants.


https://twitter.com/jmaisi tweets :
'Migration Watch' Watch - no clear accredited expertise yet accorded so much authority

https://twitter.com/mryahbut tweets :
Roma at Manchester Day Parade. Nice one!

Who are Bulgaria's Roma?


Myanmar politics and current art scene.


'You sold me to an old man, father. May God destroy your home, I was your daughter. ' -
The poetry of Afghan women :


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