Migration news roundup 4 July 2022

View of Houses of Parliament from bridge over river Thames

Stories that inspired us this week

A new UNHCR film project ‘Telling the Real Story’ spotlights the daily challenges and resilience of Somali and Eritrean refugees in Ethiopia. (Source: BBC)

What does it mean to be free? 'Fear Freedom' by Anne is a short film by a migrant artist from Leeds screened recently during Refugee Week. (Source: Mafwa Theatre, via YouTube, six minutes)

International news

Tragedy struck in the USA when 50 migrants were found dead in the back of a lorry in Texas. In echoes of debates closer to home about people crossing the Channel in small boats, commentators alternately blame smugglers, border policy and a lack of safe routes to claim asylum. (Sources: BBC, the Guardian)

This is difficult to watch at times, but this ten minute video explores the rise in anti-refugee sentiment in Turkey particularly towards Syrians. (Source: Middle East Eye)

A report claims Lithuania broke EU and international law in its treatment of refugees who crossed from Belarus. Similarly, a Polish court ruled Poland broke EU law by pushing back asylum seekers attempting to cross from Belarus. In contrast, journalists returned to the Polish border town of Prezmysl that has helped more Ukrainians than anywhere else in the world. (Sources: Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch, ITV)

A new migration museum has opened in Denmark, shining a fresh light on stories of forced migration. (Source: France 24)

UK borders and migration policy

The Home Office updated various policies to reflect changes under the Nationality and Borders Act, including a policy paper covering the new temporary protection status for persons arriving through irregular routes and so could be deemed ‘inadmissible’. You can  read an analysis of the policy paper here. (Sources: Home Office, Free Movement)

Plans to re-open a former immigration detention centre in Oxfordshire have been met with criticism. The centre is now likely to be used for asylum seekers marked for removal to Rwanda. A Home Office factsheet on the detention site confirms it will accommodate up to 400 male asylum seekers. (Sources: Oxford Mail, Home Office)

Regarding small boat crossings:

(Sources: BBC, Home Office, Guardian)

Specific migrant groups

Sponsors on the Homes for Ukraine scheme could be asked to extend their pledge to offer accommodation to their guests beyond six months. At the same time, there are concerns that lack of safeguarding checks will lead to local authorities being unaware of the whereabouts of Ukrainian children and teenagers who have arrived in the UK via the family visa scheme. (Sources: LGC Plus, Mirror)

The ‘Windrush 75 Network’ held a webinar to discuss why Windrush matters today and the importance of recognising that the Windrush generation and their descendants are ‘part of the fabric of British society’. Relatedly, in response to an article by Lenny Henry this letter explores the difference between ‘integration’ and ‘assimilation’ and why Windrush parents might have urged their children to ‘fit in’ rather than celebrate their identity in the racial context of Britain at the time. (Sources: British Future, the Guardian)

A government update for those with an EU Settlement Scheme (EUSS) status on travelling to and from the UK has been published. (Source: Home Office)

Panorama provided an insight into the political situation in Hong Kong and the reasons for the British National Overseas (BNO) visa route in a 30 minute documentary, whilst this article explores how Hongkongers are getting on once here in the UK. (Sources: BBC, Ejinsight) 

Chancellors have warned UK universities may prioritise attracting international and postgraduate students whose fees are not capped by the government rather than those paying home fees, due to rising inflation and over a decade of capped tuition fees. An inspection report of the immigration system as it relates to the Higher Education sector has been published. (Sources: the Guardian, Independent Chief Inspector of Borders and Immigration)

There are reports of third party recruitment agents exploiting seasonal fruit pickers by charging thousands in illegal fees. (Source: The Bureau Investigates)

Click here for clarification on what the difference is between refugee status and humanitarian protection. (Source: Free Movement)

Cohesion and integration

The first round of Census 2021 data and interactive tools was released covering population counts by gender and age at local authority level. The population in Yorkshire and Humber has grown by 4% to 5.5 million since the last Census in 2011 – with the most pronounced growth in the over 65 age group. (Source: Office for National Statistics)

One for tennis fans! Local community members including 1,500 people from a refugee background were invited to a centenary celebration at Wimbledon. (Source: the Guardian)

Last updated:

4th July 2022