Immigration law and policy

Law Centre submission to the Advisory Committee to the Framework Convention for the Protection of National Minorities

The UK’s compliance with the Council of Europe’s Framework Convention on National Minorities is currently being examined. We highlight that a number of policies and practices in Northern Ireland – including the use of hotels as asylum contingency accommodation – are not compliant with the rights protected by this Convention.

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Response: NI Affairs Committee (2021)

We comment on Northern Ireland's approach to immigration and make a number of recommendations in relation to asylum seekers, victims/survivors of modern slavery, EU Settlement Scheme, frontier workers and public funds.

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Response: Independent Monitoring Authority (2021)

We identify a number of issues relating to the operation of the EU Settlement Scheme in Northern Ireland.

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Response: Department of Justice Modern Slavery and Human Trafficking Strategy (2021)

We propose a number of additional actions to better support victims of trafficking.

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Response: Chronic Homelessness Action Plan (2019)

Migrant destitution is increasing across the UK: an outcome of the ‘hostile environment.’ An increase in chronic homelessness and migrant destitution has attracted the concern of regional and international human rights monitoring bodies.

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Ending Indefinite Immigration Detention (2019)

The UK is the only country in Europe that permits the indefinite immigration detention of migrants, despite calls from every walk of life and from across the political spectrum calling for a halt to this harmful practice. This Legal Information Briefing outlines the harm caused by indefinite detention; provides a context of immigration detention in Northern Ireland and summarises some of the authoritative voices that have spoken out in recent years against UK detention policy.

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Response: JCHR inquiry into immigration detention (2018)

We maintain that the UK’s immigration detention policy is unjustifiable and highlight concerns about the adequacy of processes relating to identifying vulnerable persons who should not be held at Larne House.

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Response: Short-term holding facility rules (2016)

While it is good that the Home Office is finally issuing Short-term Holding Facility Rules (which will govern detention at Larne House), we think they should be much more focused on ensuring that vulnerable categories of people are quickly identified and released from detention. This would include victims of trafficking, victims of torture, pregnant women, etc.

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Response: British / Irish visa systems (2015)

In this response to the British / Irish Parliamentary Assembly Inquiry, we call on the British and Irish governments to recognise each others’ visas so as to allow for smoother travel between jurisdictions. Concerns about current cross border immigration enforcement operations must be addressed.

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Response: Parliamentary inquiry into immigration detention (2014)

We argue that the UK's immigration detention policy is wholly contrary to UNCHR's guidelines and at odds with detention policy across Europe. The UK’s position is extraordinary and unjustifiable. We also outline a number of Northern Ireland specific detention issues.

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Response: Review into ending the detention of children for immigration purposes (2010)

The Government’s commitment to end the detention of children for immigration purposes is welcome - if long overdue. Clear evidence shows that detention harms children. The systematic administrative detention of children and families is unacceptable under any circumstances.

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