Access to justice / Immigration and migrants' rights


Posted on 06 May 2021

  • Migrants at greater risk of rights abuse due to Government’s asylum and immigration plans  
  • Plan is part of Government’s bid to make itself untouchable, says Liberty
  • Broader threat would weaken access to justice for all

Liberty has criticised the Government’s immigration plans for paving the way for greater rights abuses against migrants.

In its response[1]to the Government’s consultation on its proposals, the human rights organisation said it would put migrants at even greater risk of human rights abuses by:

  • Making it harder for people seeking asylum in the UK to make their case
  • Making it harder to challenge Home Office decisions which undermine rights
  • Making it harder to access and fund legal support

One of the ways the Government is seeking to do this is by changing a type of legal challenge called ‘judicial review’.

This process enables ordinary people to challenge governments and public bodies when they get things wrong.

Liberty has warned these proposals are part of a much broader Government attempt to put itself above the law, which would ultimately damage access to justice for everyone else in the process, and should be thrown out.

If the Government continues along this path it would become untouchable. Liberty believes the Government’s broader plan includes attempts to limit how it is held accountable through the courts, in Parliament, and on the streets.

Jun Pang, Liberty policy and campaigns officer, said:

“We all want to live in an equal, just and fair society. But the Government’s immigration plan puts that at risk. It would put migrants at even greater danger of human rights abuses, and further prevent them from being able to hold those in power to account. We know that attacks on human rights will always start with people who are already marginalised. This attack on migrants’ rights is no different.

“This is just one part of a much bigger Government bid to make itself untouchable which will roll back access to justice for everyone. Being able to challenge governments and other public bodies is at the heart of our democracy – but those in power are rolling out a sprawling web of changes to our ability to stand up to power in the courts, in Parliament and on the streets.”

Notes to Editors:

1. Read Liberty’s full response to the Government’s New Plan for Immigration consultation.

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