Immigration and asylum | The Guardian
Guardian and Observer charity telethon: give our journalists a call
Fri, 15 Dec 2017 18:16:44 GMT

Katharine Viner, Polly Toynbee, Hugh Muir and Vanessa Thorpe are among those waiting to speak to you. Call 0203 353 4368 on Saturday

Want to talk about politics with Polly Toynbee and Jonathan Freedland? Get fashion advice from Jess Cartner-Morley? Discuss the Guardian with editor Katharine Viner?

This year’s Guardian and Observer appeal is raising money for charities working to tackle youth homelessness and asylum seeker destitution, and for one day only, on Saturday, our readers have the opportunity to donate to this important cause while speaking to some of the best-known names from the Guardian and Observer.

Related: 'It's about making them feel at home': meet the couple who give a bed to the homeless

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First vulnerable child refugee arrives in UK from Greece under Dubs scheme
Fri, 15 Dec 2017 14:31:05 GMT

Boy was living in squalid Greek camp for more than a year since British government pledged to bring over hundreds of children

The first vulnerable child refugee stranded in Greece who qualifies for sanctuary under the Dubs amendment has arrived in the UK, more than a year after the government pledged to bring over hundreds of children.

The Home Office had accepted that the boy was vulnerable and eligible for transfer 16 months ago.

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Where do the Brexit negotiations stand at the end of phase one?
Fri, 15 Dec 2017 14:07:49 GMT

European leaders confirmed at a summit today that agreement had been reached on the first phase of Brexit negotiations. How did we get here, and what remains to be settled in phase two?

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'Chinese burn? We just say burn': comics on joking about race and immigration
Fri, 15 Dec 2017 07:00:10 GMT

Phil Wang has a messy relationship with the British empire. Evelyn Mok felt dirty joking about her family. Kae Kurd riffs on being a refugee. Aisha Alfa was shocked to find she had a ‘black perspective’. They talk patriotism, stereotypes and stigmas

I’m a sort of half-immigrant. I was born in Stoke, where my mum is from, but we went back to Malaysia, where my dad’s from, a week after I was born. When I was 16 I moved back to the UK and have been here since. I have a complicated relationship with the British empire but I look for what connects us. Commonwealth countries share a certain sense of humour. The empire spread self-deprecation and a self-mocking attitude across the commonwealth – as well as railroads.

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The Guardian view on deporting rough sleepers: rights and wrongs | Editorial
Thu, 14 Dec 2017 19:40:02 GMT
For more than three years the Home Office ran a shaming and unlawful policy just to undermine the right to free movement

The high court has robustly rejected the Home Office case that citizens of the EU and the European Economic Area were abusing their right to be in the UK if they were sleeping rough. The government has finally been forced to acknowledge that it is not illegal to be too poor to pay for a roof over your head, and it is illegal to return such people to their country of origin.

This policy of picking up, detaining and then “sending home” EU citizens belongs entirely to Theresa May. Five years ago, when she was home secretary and Downing Street only a glint in her eye, she announced that she intended to create a “hostile environment” for people living in the UK illegally. Critics warned that it would turn landlords, GPs and teachers into immigration enforcement officers; the Home Office duly began hoovering up information from interactions between migrant workers and the state. Three years ago, jobseekers from EU and EEA countries were banned from claiming housing benefit, precipitating hundreds of low-paid workers into insecure housing and some on to the street. Soon, the idea that rough sleeping was an abuse of the right of free movement was being tested on the ground. In Operation Adoze, launched in November 2015, 127 rough sleepers from EEA countries were detained and removed in eight weeks. It became part of the official administrative removals policy; charities that work with street sleepers, like St Mungo’s and ThamesReach, were recruited to pass information about their clients to the Home Office, leading to their removal.

Related: Please help us tackle urgent problems of homelessness and destitution

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Bitter divisions over migration threaten show of unity at EU summit
Thu, 14 Dec 2017 18:04:49 GMT

Germany and Italy criticise proposal by European council president, Donald Tusk, who described refugee quotas as ‘divisive’

Divisions over migration marred a show of unity at an EU summit on Thursday, after Germany and Italy hit back at plans that could spell the end of mandatory refugee quotas.

Germany, Italy and the Netherlands have led criticism of a proposal from the European council president, Donald Tusk, who has described refugee quotas as “divisive and ineffective”.

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Boxing champion awaits deportation after fighting for England six times
Thu, 14 Dec 2017 15:45:14 GMT

Kelvin Fawaz was a child when he came to the UK from Nigeria, a country that has said he cannot live there as he is not a citizen

A boxing champion who has represented England six times has been arrested and locked in an immigration detention centre, pending deportation to Nigeria, a country that has said it won’t allow him to live there as he is not a citizen.

Kelvin Fawaz, London’s current middleweight boxing champion, has been in the UK for 15 years, since he was a child. He is a gifted amateur boxer whom Team GB wanted to represent Britain in the 2012 and 2016 Olympics, writing twice to the Home Office on his behalf.

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Home Office policy to deport EU rough sleepers ruled unlawful
Thu, 14 Dec 2017 12:42:07 GMT

High court says removal of homeless individuals originally from EEA countries is contrary to EU law and discriminatory

A Home Office policy to deport rough sleepers from countries in the European Economic Area (EEA) has been ruled unlawful by the high court after a challenge brought on behalf of two Polish men and a Latvian.

Since 2016 the Home Office has designated rough sleeping as an abuse of EU free movement rights in its administrative removal policy.

Related: How charities helped to deport homeless migrants | Gracie Mae Bradley

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Guardian and Observer charity appeal hits £250,000 in five days
Wed, 13 Dec 2017 15:00:35 GMT

Appeal supporting charities helping homeless youngsters and destitute refugees was launched by editor in chief Katharine Viner last week

Donations to the Guardian and Observer charity appeal in support of homeless youngsters and destitute refugees have hit the £250,000 mark after just five days.

The 2017 appeal is raising money for three charities working with vulnerable individuals on the frontline of homelessness and destitution: Centrepoint, Depaul UK, and the No Accommodation Network (Naccom).

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Hundreds of thousands of EU nationals 'may not get right to stay in UK'
Wed, 13 Dec 2017 00:01:04 GMT

Migration experts say even simplified system announced by government could leave large number struggling to comply

Hundreds of thousands of EU nationals living in Britain could struggle to secure Home Office permission to stay in the UK after Brexit, according to migration experts.

The Oxford University-based Migration Observatory says hundreds of thousands of EU nationals could struggle to comply even with a streamlined application system for “settled status”, which will open in the second half of next year.

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Minister outlines how EU nationals will apply for UK 'settled status'
Tue, 12 Dec 2017 13:22:40 GMT

Brandon Lewis says there will be a form with up to eight questions, a cost of up to £72, and a decision within two weeks

The registration of 3 million EU nationals for “settled status” in Britain will involve an online application form with six to eight questions, a cost of no more than £72, and a decision delivered within two weeks, the immigration minister, Brandon Lewis, has said.

Related: MEPs will toughen their Brexit demands after David Davis's 'unhelpful' interview, says Verhofstadt - Politics live

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MPs urged to back Brexit bill clause to protect child refugees
Tue, 12 Dec 2017 08:12:45 GMT

Amendment to allow children to be reunited with wider family members in UK, not just parents, to be debated on Tuesday

Post-Brexit immigration law could mean refugee children are permanently separated from their families, the head of Unicef UK has warned, urging MPs to support a Conservative-backed amendment on refugee rights to the EU withdrawal bill.

The global charity’s UK boss, Mike Penrose, urged the government to include wider family reunification rights in new immigration laws for when the UK leaves the EU.

What is the EU withdrawal bill?

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'Nobody cares about us': Britons living in rest of EU voice their dismay
Tue, 12 Dec 2017 08:00:28 GMT

We asked British nationals living in the EU to tell us how they view the latest Brexit negotiations and where they see the future

Kate, 49, project manager, has lived in the Netherlands for 17 years.

Staying in the single market and customs union

Related: 'Brace for impact': EU citizens in the UK react to Brexit deal

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'Single market variant' only way to avoid hard border in Northern Ireland, says Keir Starmer – video
Sun, 10 Dec 2017 13:51:14 GMT

Shadow Brexit secretary Keir Starmer has said Labour is prepared to accept the ‘easy movement’ of workers between the EU and Britain in order to secure the benefits of both the single market and customs union after Brexit. Appearing on the BBC’s Andrew Marr Show, Starmer added that Labour’s approach was ‘the only way to achieve no hard border in Northern Ireland’

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The antidote to Brexit: a Santa with a real beard | Brief letters
Fri, 08 Dec 2017 19:05:10 GMT
Brexit and welfare cuts | Free movement | EU-UK agreement | ‘Creepy bearded men’ | Coach potatoes | Wordwheel and Trump

Does Dawn Foster (May’s Brexit blinkers are preventing her seeing anything else, 7 December) really believe that this government would be implementing the kind of policies needed to reduce poverty and inequality if it weren’t for its preoccupation with Brexit? It would not take much “bandwidth” to overturn the ideologically motivated social security cuts, such as the four-year benefit freeze in most working-age benefits, implemented prior to Brexit. Yet these have been identified by a range of independent organisations as the main driver of a predicted significant increase in child poverty and inequality. Meanwhile the government continues to shovel more money towards the better-off through tax cuts, Brexit notwithstanding.
Ruth Lister
Labour, House of Lords

• If the EU had any sense, it would be offering two deals to the UK: whatever mess Theresa May cooks up; but also, as an alternative, continued membership with increased control over population movement – the main thing that mattered to most genuine leave voters? The momentum to give the UK voters a second democratic choice would then be immense.
Timothy Bailey

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Who are the charities we're supporting with our 2017 charity appeal?
Fri, 08 Dec 2017 13:00:03 GMT

Depaul UK, Naccom and Centrepoint do vital work in helping young homeless people and destitute asylum seekers survive and rebuild their lives

Click here to donate to our appeal

The Guardian and Observer 2017 charity appeal is supporting three charities working with young homeless people and asylum seekers, refugees and migrants facing destitution. Here’s a brief guide to what they do.

Related: Please help us tackle urgent problems of homelessness and destitution

Related: I was one of the hidden homeless. I needed help to build my life

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Please help us tackle urgent problems of homelessness and destitution
Fri, 08 Dec 2017 13:00:03 GMT

Youth homelessness and extreme poverty among asylum seekers are overlapping and compelling issues which cuts to services are making worse

Click here to donate to our appeal

The themes of this year’s Guardian and Observer charity appeal are youth homelessness and destitution among asylum seekers. These are overlapping causes which are both compelling and urgent, and which highlight the dire risk that austerity and the erosion of the social security safety net pose to some of society’s most vulnerable people.

Related: I was one of the hidden homeless. I needed help to build my life

Related: Who are the charities we're supporting with our 2017 charity appeal?

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EU citizens in the UK: share your reaction to the Brexit deal
Fri, 08 Dec 2017 12:55:44 GMT

As a deal is announced in Brussels, we’d like to hear how you feel about your future if you are an EU citizen living in the UK

Theresa May and Jean-Claude Juncker announced a last minute agreement on Friday morning, with the European commission president saying there was “sufficient progress” in negotiations to move to the next phase of negotiations.

Related: Brexit divorce bill estimated at between £35bn and £39bn – live updates

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'Brexit was the tipping point': EU nationals on why they left the UK
Thu, 07 Dec 2017 11:53:16 GMT

With a large number of EU nationals choosing to return to their native country, some of you tell us your reasons for leaving

Returned in 2017

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Home Office threatens to deport Polish man seeking help after attack
Wed, 06 Dec 2017 18:57:23 GMT

EU national was sent to a removal centre near London after reporting a crime with his wife

A Polish man has been detained for more than two months and threatened with deportation after reporting a crime, according to his wife and lawyer.

Miroslaw Zieba, 48, and his wife Mariola Zieba, 37, said they went to the police after their landlord walked into the flat they were renting with two other men, all wearing balaclavas, and forced the couple out after threatening them with a kitchen knife and a baseball bat.

It beggars belief that foreign nationals should be apprehensive about reporting crimes for fear of being deported.

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