Statement on the 'New Plan for Immigration'

“The Jewish Council for Racial Equality (JCORE) is deeply concerned by plans outlined today by the government for the UK’s asylum system. While the proposals promise fairness, they would result in the cruel creation of a two-tier system, which would seek to divide vulnerable people through the routes in which they have fled to the this country to escape persecution and conflict.

Although the government’s commitment to improving the UK’s resettlement schemes is welcome, such pathways provide protections for only a very small number of those who seek sanctuary in this country. The Home Secretary’s ill-judged pledges to remove asylum seekers who have entered the UK after passing through a “safe country” are a shameful attack on international refugee law, and will only introduce torment and uncertainty to the lives of those seeking sanctuary. Under such plans, many Jewish refugees who fled to the UK from mainland Europe in the 1930s would not have been provided with protections.

It is also extremely concerning that such proposals will limit family reunification rights, and would likely leave child refugees stranded in often appalling conditions. If the Home Secretary is serious about protecting children, and preventing vulnerable refugees from being forced into dangerous journeys at the hands of people traffickers, then she must instead introduce a wide range of safe and legal routes to the UK, and re-open pathways for unaccompanied children to reach sanctuary in this country closed by her government.”