Author: PETER LAZENBY
Home Office documents reveal MPs have passed on information to immigration enforcement officials over 700 times
BACK-STABBING MPs have ratted on hundreds of immigrants among their constituents who have approached them asking for help, damning findings revealed today.
Home Office documents show that MPs have passed information to immigration enforcement officials 723 times since the government’s “hostile environment” policy was introduced in 2012.
Last year, MPs passed on information 73 times after immigrants asked them for help.
The scandal has prompted 15 organisations who work with migrants to launch a campaign entitled MPs not Border Guards, in which they ask MPs to sign a pledge not to betray foreign constituents.
The organisations have also written to Commons Speaker John Bercow to express their deep concern over the MPs’ actions.
The letter describes such behaviour as a “fundamental breach of trust” which leaves many migrants fearful of approaching their MP.
Immigrant advice groups say they can no longer recommend that people approach their MP for support unless the MP has signed the pledge promising not to report them to Home Office immigration enforcement officers.
More than 100 MPs, including shadow home secretary Diane Abbott, have signed the groups’ pledge.
Joint Council for the Welfare of Immigrants chief executive Satbir Singh said: “Everyone has the right to seek advice from their MPs in a confidential and safe environment.
“MPs should not be taking it upon themselves to act as ‘border guards,’ betraying the trust of their constituents and perpetuating a culture of hostility towards migrants. Have we not learnt anything from the scandal and tragedy of Windrush?”
Migrants Organise campaigns and advocacy officer Akram Salhab added: “The demand that MPs represent all their constituents equally is a basic principle of how Parliament works.
“Sadly, this is yet another pillar of our democracy that has been sacrificed at the altar of the government’s hostile environment policies.
“Many of our members are now afraid of approaching their MPs lest their reaching out for support be used to detain and deport them.
“All political parties, whether in government or not, can end this practice today by instructing their MPs not to share their constituents’ data for immigration enforcement purposes.”