Home Affairs has revealed that the Bailiwick was consulted on an early version of the controversial Illegal Migration Bill, the UK Government proposal Prime Minister Rishi Sunak is trying to push through Parliament.
One of Sunak’s key priorities for 2023 is to stop small boats landing in the UK from mainland Europe and the way he intends to do that is through the implementation of the Illegal Migration Bill.
The Bill is not yet enshrined in law and will have to pass through both the House of Commons and the House of Lords. However, if and when it is enacted, there will be ramifications for the Channel Islands and changes to legislation will need to be enforced here.
The Bill clarifies several times where the proposed legislation extends beyond the UK and encompasses the Channel Islands and the Isle of Man.
The Bill has been developed to deter unlawful migration and seeks to accomplish this in a variety of ways. The main impact would be to deny people who arrive in the UK (and the Channel Islands) citizenship - ever - if they have arrived illegally.
Express asked the States of Guernsey if the relevant department (the Committee for Home Affairs) agrees with the proposals in the Bill and whether it was consulted. Express didn’t receive an answer to the first question, but did get the following statement from the President of Home Affairs, Deputy Rob Prow:
“The Illegal migration Bill is a UK Government proposal which would, if agreed through the many stages of the UK’s parliamentary process for new legislation, introduce new provisions on how illegal immigration and people trafficking will be managed.
“The Bailiwick was consulted on an early version of this bill, insofar as it may impact related UK nationality and immigration legislation which either applies directly or have been extended to the Bailiwick. We are reviewing the current version of the bill, including engaging with St James’ Chambers to understand its full impact locally should it eventually come into law in the UK.
“Our officers work closely on a multi-agency basis to plan for the management of many different scenarios in relation to the arrival of illegal Immigrants and this includes close working with both the UK and French authorities.”
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