What’s wrong with the Nationality and Borders Bill?
The Nationality and Borders Bill is currently making its way through the House of Commons. It seeks to do away entirely with the independent arrival of asylum-seekers to this country – and there are some other very worrying aspects such as criminalising asylum-seekers, detaining them (indefinitely), processing them on remote islands (such as in the South Atlantic), and deporting them to unsafe countries – a prohibited action known as refoulement.
One of the biggest problems with the bill is that it directly contravenes existing international refugee law, including the United Nations 1951 Refugee Convention (which Britain helped to draft) and the European Convention on Human Rights. The United Nations has taken the unusual step of speaking out strongly against the bill.
The Home Office has presented the bill to the public in a way that seems compassionate and sensible – but only by knowing a bit about the way asylum works, and what the government intends, can you unpick the plan and see how devastating it really is. The refugee charity sector is appalled.
Faith groups should be very concerned. The bill is cruel and unjust, and will leave us with a very limited asylum system which will criminalise and punish some of the most vulnerable, traumatised people in the world. As Nick Baines, Anglican Bishop of Leeds, said to us:
“Christian faith has always been clear: we protect and defend the poorest and weakest people among us. Rather than demonise refugees and asylum seekers, we need to show the sort of costly love and mercy that we would wish for ourselves, were we to find ourselves similarly bereft. The government needs to be challenged on its view of basic human value in a contested world.”
Here’s what we’ll cover in our webinar
- Is Britain really ‘full’? Busting some myths about the UK refugee population
- What the new bill sets out to do
- 7 key problems with the bill
- Reactions to the bill from leading voices across society in Britain
- Why the government’s words can’t be taken at face value
- Why faith organisations should care about this bill
- How you and your faith organisation can protest the bill.
Register for the webinar
- You, if you’re a leader, staff member or layperson in your faith community.
- We welcome all Christian denominations and all other faiths. The webinar content will not be religious.
- This event is primarily aimed at organisations in Yorkshire and the North East, purely to make it easier to publicise. However, ALL are more than welcome, from anywhere in the UK.
When is it?
- 4pm-5:15pm on Tuesday 28 September 2021.
How do you register?
Email [email protected]tyofsanctuary.org and let us know you’d like to attend. We will then:
- Send you the Zoom link
- Follow up with some additional information, including how to co-sign a letter protesting the bill (should you choose to do so).
Please note that we’ll record the session so those who can’t attend can view it later. If you don’t wish to be recorded, please (i) keep your camera off (ii) alter the way your name appears on the screen (iii) ask any questions via the chat.