by Mariam Tuma
In the last months, JustCitizens members have been taking part in trainings and info sessions organised by JustRight Scotland’s legal team to raise awareness about the impacts of the #RefugeeBanBill in Scotland.
In one of these sessions, Francesca Sella – solicitor from JustRight Scotland’s Scottish Refugee and Migration Centre, delivered a training on the [Illegal] Migration Bill to cover the most important aspects of the bill:
- who will be affected
- the newfound duty to remove
- the banning of asylum in the UK
She explained that this Bill will affect our communities, our neighbours, our friends, our families, and those who need our support the most. The UK Government could have chosen to address the asylum backlog, make decisions on cases, and let people begin their lives contributing to society through work, study, and community building. Instead, they have chosen to waste money and resources on a racist attempt to keep asylum seekers away.
During the training, Francesca also highlighted that the most vulnerable groups in society will be the hardest hit, and that protections as we know them have disappeared.
What we say
Although this training was incredibly important to understanding how we can fight against these horrifying and racist policies; this info session took a toll on us all.
We had a lot to say…
“You’re essentially locking people up and restricting every aspect of their life and complaining about them not being a part of society. It makes no sense to approach immigration in this way. It will hurt people and it will hurt society”
“This so-called ‘plan’ is so much more expensive than what we have now, and it is so much worse. Such a waste of resources and money during one of the worst cost-of-living crises in history”
“This bill is completely unreasonable and unworkable!”
“It is scary and unnecessary. Why would you hurt anyone like this? It helps nobody!”
“It’s so difficult to imagine how people can look at this and think this is a good solution. it is insanely rigid and extreme”
What we are doing
We are looking for ways to fight this Bill.
We want to speak up and share useful information with our networks and other volunteers, let our neighbours know we stand with them.
We want to build on solidarity, not on hate: we would like to create communities of sanctuary.
We plan to resist this Bill. We will work across Scotland with grassroots organisations and community groups to reject this Bill in its entirety.