This joint letter has been endorsed by a broad coalition of experts, civil society and community organisations, leading actors and campaigners opposing the  Nationality and Borders Bill. Collectively, they are raising the alarm about the passage of the Nationality and Borders Bill, and how it will violate the UK’s commitment under international law to provide safe passage and refuge and also cement a racist and Islamophobic two tier citizenship regime in the UK. The statement is signed by high profile and accomplished persons, such as the acclaimed windrush campaigner Patrick Vernon OBE and historian and filmmaker David Olusoga OBE

We the undersigned have come together to oppose the passing of the Nationality and Borders Bill. We assert that:

1- The Nationality and Borders Bill is the latest assault against migrant rights and the democratic rights of British citizens that sharply escalated since the so-called War on Terror. This bill is a route to disenfranchisement and even deportation of people of colour on an unprecedented scale.

2- The Nationality and Borders bill along with the Police, Crime, Sentencing and Courts Bill are unjust particularly for people of colour, and those born outside the UK. They will prevent them from attending protests on any issues of social and political justice. This simple, peaceful action could lead not only to arrest, but to loss of their citizenship – which is never a danger for white British people. This is an overtly racist piece of legislation.

3- The Nationality and Borders Bill stands in violation to the UK’s commitment to the 1951 Geneva Refugee Convention. It is an expansion of a violent system that dehumanises the most vulnerable, excludes ‘undeserving’ others and will effectively make the Government unchallengeable and refuge and asylum practically impossible. The bill will punish refugees on arrival, it will extend their detention and make it even more difficult for people to be released. The bill makes provisions for offshore processing of migrants, which will render them without rights or protections at all. Furthermore, the bill sets out a range of draconian measures to exclude people from the UK, including a lethal change which allows Border Forces to turn back boats carrying refugees across the Channel.

4- The naivety of assuming “good faith” on the part of the Home Secretary in the exercise of these sweeping powers has become ever clearer over the course of the past few years as the Windrush scandal, the hostile environment and the criminalisation of those seeking asylum from persecution and conflict have all evidenced.

5- Clause 9 of this Bill is merely the pinnacle of a raft of legislation that has already subjected the citizenship of millions of Britons of foreign heritage, including those born and raised in the United Kingdom, to the caprice of the Home Secretary. In fact the Home Secretary, since 2010, has already exercised this power against more than 150 people, overwhelmingly Muslims, using secret ‘evidence’ and secret courts which the affected individual has no ability to challenge.

6- Clause 9 now goes a step further and removes even the duty of notification, leaving millions in constant uncertainty as to the status of their citizenship.

7- The Home Office is effectively collaborating with other governments to make people stateless. It will lead to further clampdown on activists and marginalised people protesting against far-right and authoritarian governments globally.

We the undersigned call for:

1- Citizens and communities to stand united against this Bill and make their opposition to it – in its entirety – loud and vocal: migrants have the right to safe passage and refuge, and citizenship is a right that belongs to all EQUALLY, none should be excluded.

2- The unreserved rejection of the concept of a two-tier citizenship based upon one’s familial origin: it is racist both in theory and in its praxis. Our opposition to the Nationality and Borders Bill is based on this exclusionary logic and not merely the notification clause.

3- The preservation of due process in any decision regarding the deprivation of a person’s citizenship: Secret courts, secret evidence and the use of government vetted ‘special advocates’ as the only means to challenge for defendants, should have no place in a country that claims heritage to the Magna Carta.

4- A fair and transparent immigration policy which safeguards the right to humane treatment and due process for all seeking asylum in the United Kingdom.

5- Political parties and members of Parliament must pledge to oppose the Nationality and Borders Bill and reject it at the first opportunity.

  1. Muhammad Rabbani, CAGE
  2. Samantha Asumadu, Media Diversified 
  3. William Skeaping, Extinction Rebellion
  4. Abdi Hassan, Coffee Afrik CIC
  5. Keval Bharadia, South Asia Solidarity Group
  6. Amritpal Singh Dhesi, Sikh Council UK
  7. Raghad Altikriti, Muslim Association of Britain
  8. Jolyon Maugham QC, Barrister
  9. Dr Halima Begum, CEO, The Runnymede Trust
  10. Adjoa Andoh, Actor and Director 
  11. Julie Bentley, CEO, Samaritans
  12. Glenda Andrew, Preston Windrush Generation and Descendants UK
  13. Neil Gaiman, Writer
  14. Nikesh Shukla, Writer
  15. Black Lives Matter UK
  16. Patrick Vernon OBE, Windrush Campaigner
  17. Caroline Diehl MBE, Director of Social Founder Network
  18. David Olusoga OBE, Historian and Broadcaster
  19. Karis Campion, Stephen Lawrence Research Centre
  20. Shamsher Singh, National Sikh Youth Federation 
  21. Nayeem Haque, Muslim Youth Network
  22. Sabrina Qureshi, Million Women Rise
  23. Tauhid Pasha, British Bangladeshi Freedom50
  24. Kenneth Olumuyiwa Tharp CBE
  25. Sharon Kaur, Sikh Human Rights 
  26. Ben Jamal, Director Palestine Solidarity Campaign
  27. Simon Blake, CEO, Mental Health First Aid England
  28. Sarah Hughes, CEO Centre for Mental Health 
  29. Poppy Jaman, CEO City Mental Health Alliance
  30. Liv Little, gal-dem
  31. Rosie Tressler OBE, CEO Student Minds
  32. Prof. Sunny Singh, Jhalak Prize
  33. Malia Bouattia, Red Pepper Magazine
  34. Ghulam Haydar, Myriad Foundation
  35. Richie Brave, Presenter
  36. Dr Yvonne Ridley, Director General of European Muslim League
  37. Guilaine Kinouani, Author, Race Reflections
  38. Patrice Wellesley-Cole, retired Judge
  39. Ali Kazmi, Save Our Citizenships 
  40. Ava Vidal, Comedian and Writer
  41. Anthony Anaxagorou and Patricia Ferguson, Out-Spoken Press
  42. Dorothea Jones, The Monitoring Group
  43. Chris Asumadu, Management Accountant MBA
  44. Patricia Hamzahee, Integriti Capital
  45. Shakeel Begg, Imam at Lewisham Islamic Centre
  46. Mohammed Arshed, Belfast Islamic Centre 
  47. Dr. Akhtar-Saeed Bhutta, Secretary, UKIM-Scotland
  48. Selina Ullah, Muslim Women’s Council
  49. Sahra Mire, Ashaadibi Centre
  50. Safia Jama, Women’s Inclusive Team 
  51. Amarpreet Singh Kular, Sri Guru Singh Sabha Slough 
  52. Suliman Gani, Imam Purley Masjid 
  53. Harjit Singh, Kesri Lehar Scotland
  54. Kinjell Singh, Amnesty Society University of Birmingham 
  55. Shareefa Energy, Poet, Writer & Activist
  56. Charles Thompson MBE, Screen Nation Media
  57. Jagdeesh Singh, Kesri Lehar UK 
  58. Soraya Chemaly, Writer and Activist 
  59. Amelia Maling, Steering Committee, Womens Equality Party
  60. Dr Kavita Bhanot, Literature Must Fall
  61. Jake Ferguson, Baobab Foundation and Black Men for Change
  62. Harsev Bains, Association of Indian Communists GB
  63. Leyose Paul, Secretary, Indian Workers Association (IWA GB)
  64. Ashik Mohammed Nazar, Kairali UK
  65. Rory Anderson, Convener, Social Work Action Network
  66. J Mark Dodds, The People’s Pub Partnership
  67. Jane Bassett, National Education Union (Hackney)
  68. Dyal Bagri, National President – Indian Workers Association GB
  69. Daniel York Loh, Chair Equity Race Equality Committee
  70. Jennifer Lim, Creative Producer, Moongate Productions 
  71. Lucy Sheen, BEATS.org, Foundling Productions 
  72. David Law, Licensee, The Eagle Ale House
  73. Jessica Turtle, Museum of Homelessness 
  74. Zita Holbourne, National Chair BARAC UK 
  75. Miranda Grell, Barrister 
  76. Manasi Pophale, History Speak
  77. Gurpreet Singh Anand, Khalsa Jatha British Isles
  78. Adam Elliott-Cooper, School of Politics and IR, Queen Mary, University of London
  79. CN Lester, LGBTQI activist and author
  80. Yansie Rolston, Associate Director, The Ubele Initiative 
  81. Yvonne Field, CEO The Ubele Initiative 
  82. Annie Viswanathan, Director, Bail for Immigration Detainees
  83. Ellen Graubart, Unite the Union
  84. Kate Shurety, Charity CEO
  85. Dr Mohammed Rahman, Senior Lecturer in Criminology 
  86. Subhadra Das, Writer and historian 
  87. Julia Davidson, Founder of Peterborough Windrush 
  88. Charmaine Simpson, Black History Studies
  89. Gil Mualem-Doron, Director SEAS
  90. Fahid Qurashi, Lecturer in Criminology 
  91. Kamel Hawwash, Professor, University of Birmingham
  92. Kuldeep Singh Deol, Vice PresIdent, Guru Nanak Gurdwara Smethwick 
  93. Dr Javed H Gill, West of Scotland Racial Equality Council
  94. Sarbjit Ganger, Director Asian Women’s Resource Centre 
  95. Massoud Shadjareh, Islamic Human Rights Commission 
  96. Fin Kennedy, Playwright and Artistic Director
  97. Ferda Ataman, Publicist, New German Media Makers
  98. Michael Simons, Hackney Stand Up To Racism
  99. John Mayford, CEO Olmec
  100. Yvette Griffith, Chief Executive, Jazz re:freshed 

Exclusive in the New Statesman: ‘A letter opposing the legislation has been signed by 100 civil society figures, including the CEOs of the Runnymede Trust and Samaritans, the New Statesman can reveal.

The open letter was organised by CAGE and Media Diversified. Managing director of CAGE Muhammad Rabbani said: “This bill will seek to bolster the racist and Islamophobic deprivation powers and further erode the right to a fair trial and appeal. These powers must be scrapped entirely, beginning from clause nine and ending with the two-tier citizenship regime.”

Samantha Asumadu, founder of Media Diversified, told the New Statesman: “Myself and up to six million people will live in fear that one wrong move, even just one unforced error or car accident could see us arrested, judged in secret and deported. This targeted, racist legislation is an existential threat to all our loved ones, neighbours, and colleagues.”

If you enjoyed reading this post and you got some benefit or insight from reading it donate to keep Media Diversified’s website online

For ideas about how you may resist the bill use BID Detention’s template to email your MP that the #BordersBill will criminalise refugees, erode the meagre rights of those subject to immigration control & sow further division into UK society. Click here for the petition. opposing clause 9 of the Nationality and Borders Bill. Sign, and share on your social media channels.

Find out who your MP is and what their email address is by going to writetothem.com and entering your postcode. Also find out which Lord is interested in the Nationality and Borders Bill and write to them by searching here. Template here

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