Closed petition Leave the 1951 Refugee Convention and 1967 Protocol & revoke the Immigration Act

UK to leave the 1951 Refugee Convention and its 1967 Protocol. Along with removing the Immigration Act 1999 from UK law. Responsibility of government in a democracy is to protect and safeguard the lives of its citizens. We believe the Government is failing alarmingly to Keep British citizens safe.

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Asylum seekers travel across multiple oceans and multiple safe countries. The UK already has millions unemployed, 280,000 people homeless; sofa serving not in stable accommodation, tens of thousands sleeping rough (Big Issue). In 2019/20 approximately 1.9 million people used a foodbank (Trussell Trust).

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Government responded

This response was given on 26 May 2021

The Government is committed to the 1951 Refugee Convention and 1967 Protocol and has no plans to repeal the Immigration and Asylum Act 1999. We are planning widespread reform of the asylum system.

Read the response in full

The UK has a long and proud history of providing protection to those that need it. The 1951 UN Refugee Convention and its 1967 Protocol are the cornerstone of this proud history, and the Government is committed to upholding our international obligations.

The Immigration and Asylum Act 1999 is a significant piece of legislation that governs large parts of the immigration system and there are no plans to remove it from UK law. That is not to say it cannot be amended and reformed should that be necessary.

We recognise the challenge of illegal migration and are committed to comprehensive reform of our asylum system. The Government’s proposed changes were outlined in the recent New Plan for Immigration policy statement, available at: https://www.gov.uk/government/consultations/new-plan-for-immigration

The consultation period has now closed, and the Government will reflect on the findings before bringing forward legislation to deliver on its commitments.

Home Office

Other parliamentary business

MPs to debate proposals for new laws relating to nationality and borders

On 19 and 20 July, MPs will debate the Nationality and Borders Bill. According to the Government, the Bill has three main objectives:

• To increase the fairness of the system to better protect and support those in need of asylum;
• To deter illegal entry into the United Kingdom, thereby breaking the business model of people smuggling networks and protecting the lives of those they endanger; and
• To remove more easily those with no right to be in the UK.

This debate will be the Bill's Second Reading, following its First Reading on 6 July.

Watch the debate (starting some time after 3pm on Mon 19 July): https://parliamentlive.tv/Commons
Read the debate transcript (available a few hours after the debate has finished): https://hansard.parliament.uk/commons/2021-07-20
Read the Bill: https://publications.parliament.uk/pa/bills/cbill/58-02/0141/210141.pdf
Read the Bill's explanatory notes: https://publications.parliament.uk/pa/bills/cbill/58-02/0141/en/210141en.pdf

What is the Second Reading of a Bill?

The Second Reading is normally the first opportunity for a Bill to be debated in either the House of Commons, or the House of Lords, and is the stage where the overall principles of the Bill are considered.

If MPs vote in favour of the Bill at Second Reading, it moves on to the next stage of the legislative process, known as Committee Stage. At Committee stage, a Bill is considered line-by-line by MPs, and changes known as amendments can be made.