Recently, the Detained Fast Track system was declared unlawful, demanding that the UK Home Office take a serious look at the problems inherent in its asylum policy. Fast Track does not give people a chance to make an individual case and moves too quickly. The Home Office does not seem interested in reflecting on these problems, as next week it has scheduled two charter flights to leave on the same night of the 28th, carrying hundreds of people, many of whom have had no chance to make a case for their right to remain. Many individuals we have spoken to have outstanding applications which the Home Office intends to steamroller through or ignore.
Charter flights treat removals as a business, and the people removed as goods for transporting. A charter is a private flight, hired specifically to remove people from the UK. They fly with only detainees and guards and are efficient machines for removing those the Home Office can manage to refuse, with whatever weak excuses they can find. Private companies run the flights, making a huge profit from the control and destruction of lives.
The Home Office would like to be able to bundle anyone onto a charter flight, whenever possible, without notice. The bigger and more impersonal the machine the better. Next Tuesday is a strong example. Two flights are leaving at the same time, one for Nigeria, and one headed to Sierra Leone via Ghana and Liberia. The attitude of ‘wholesale efficiency’ and the casual inhumanity of these flights is written large.
The people condemned by the Home Office to removal (which stands for persecution, trauma, risk, and potentially death) come from many different backgrounds and all have a different story to tell. Included in some of these stories are situations of ‘criminal deportation’. Someone who has been granted right to remain in the UK but does not have citizenship will always have the threat of the Home Office hanging over them. If they end up with a criminal conviction, they do not face the same justice system as those of us with papers in the UK. In addition, over and above serving the usual sentence, the Home Office can also use criminal proceedings as an excuse to remove someone they had previously deemed genuinely in need of protection.
The flight for Nigeria leaves from Stansted airport at 11.30 PM on Tuesday night. We don’t have confirmation on where the other flight leaves from, but it’s scheduled for the same time.
WHAT YOU CAN DO:
Email or call your MP – find your MPs contact details here http://www.parliament.uk/mps-lords-and-offices/mps/
Contact the Home Secretary, Teresa May by phone, both emails, and website- details here http://www.tmay.co.uk/contact
Complain to Stansted airport that they are allowing this barbaric practice to take place- http://www.stanstedairport.com/help-and-advice/your-feedback/
Visit Stansted to spot the plane in question and let us know which company is making money from human transportation.
Other creative ideas! If anyone wants support or materials to help spread the word about these flights and get active, or if you have any ideas, please get in touch.
Please get in touch as well if you are or know anyone affected by these flights. We are trying to gather information and stories so that the Home Office cannot make people just disappear.
Share this widely…
No borders! No nations! Stop deportations!