Sat 19 Nov, 2022

On the one month anniversary of being forced to resign as Home Secretary before returning to post under new Prime Minister Rishi Sunak, Tory right winger Suella Braverman is facing renewed calls to go over her failures to protect asylum seekers. 

Branded the ‘most disgraced and reactionary’ Home Secretary for many years, the call comes in the same week that she signed a £63m anti-migrant deal with France.

It also follows the publication of the final report of the Independent Commission of Inquiry into Asylum Provision in Scotland, by Helena Kennedy KC. The report highlights avoidable failings in the provision of care to New Scots during the Covid pandemic and made recommendations for both the UK government and the Scottish Government.

Maggie Chapman MSP said: 

“The Home Office is broken, and so is the system it is responsible for.

“At the heart of it is the most disgraced and reactionary Home Secretary for many years, and a Prime Minister that has to pretend to have confidence in her to shore up his job. One month ago she was forced to resign, and now the Prime Minister has to keep her because he’s scared of his backbenchers.

“The use of institutional accommodation such as hotels is clearly not enabling the right support to get to people in a timely way. Right now, there are many hundreds of vulnerable adults and children, including survivors of trafficking, stuck in grossly inadequate institutional-style accommodation. 

“They are being abandoned and left without the vital specialist mental health support they need. There is a terrible human cost to this, highlighted clearly by Baroness Kennedy’s damning report and the testimonies of those affected. 

“Future generations will look at the way that the Home Office has treated human beings with horror and disgust. 

“In Scotland, we are trying to do better. The hostile environment rhetoric of invasions and deportation flights to Rwanda is not repeated here. But, there are still actions we can, and should, be taking here. Helena Kennedy’s report has some clear recommendations for action by Scottish agencies. 

“That is why I have encouraged the First Minister to meet with Refugees for Justice, the survivors of the Park Inn tragedy and Baroness Kennedy to discuss immediate actions and future strategies that will better secure the rights of refugees

“As long as we remain tied to an institutionally racist Home Office these abuses will continue to be inflicted on our communities and carried out in our name. With independence we can build a far fairer and more humane system based on solidarity and support. 

“But right now, we need to be doing everything we can to safeguard the rights of those seeking safety in Scotland.”

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