The UK Government is now restricting safe and legal pathways for migration, meaning thousands of vulnerable people do not have a choice but to arrive “illegally”.
The Bill will also prevent victims of modern slavery from being identified and to access support, due to fears of being detained and deported.
This impacts people who are forcibly displaced from their homes and communities because of many reasons out of their control, as the Global Slavery Index highlights. This can include:
Displaced people are not criminals. Safe migration has never been more important, with the number of people on the move now higher than ever.
The UK Government overturned several suggested revisions made by the House of Lords to curb some of the most extreme and unworkable elements of the law.
These rejections included:
The Bill sets a grave precedent for the dismantling of long held international human rights standards. It breaches multiple international conventions and agreements.
This includes the UN Refugee Convention, the European Convention on Human Rights (ECHR), and the Council of Europe Convention on Action against Trafficking in Human Beings (ECAT).
Additionally, UK Court of appeal judges ruled elements of the bill unlawful, namely the plans to deport individuals to Rwanda, which the UK Government is seeking further appeal against.
Walk Free is extremely concerned by the heightened vulnerability to exploitation this will cause for people who are already most vulnerable. This will severely undermine the UK’s government response to modern slavery.