25 January – 6 February 2024
Our intention, in publishing every two weeks a thematic and cross-cutting calendar on racism and resistance, is to provide our readers with a useful summary of campaigning strategies, new research and legal interventions launched by advocacy organisations, individuals and families impacted by racism. Reading across the various sections we cover in this week’s calendar – from asylum rights, to criminal justice, to employment law – reveals persistence and courage in challenging times, particularly in the launching of legal interventions.
For instance, thanks largely to the diligence of Asylum Aid, the High Court found at the end of January that the Home Office has been operating a secret policy affecting the rights of 1,500 asylum seekers who are confirmed as victims of trafficking and modern slavery. Another legal challenge to the Home Office comes from the Anti-Trafficking and Labour Exploitation Unit, which is preparing a test case for modern slavery against the Home Office and Defra’s seasonal workers scheme. An organisation that has shown dogged determination is Friends, Families & Travellers, which are a co-applicant in a judicial review at the High Court against the Police, Crime, Sentencing and Courts Act’s ‘discriminatory’ powers to fine, arrest, imprison and seize the homes of Gypsies and Travellers living on roadside camps.
This week, we also highlight two important pieces of research, the findings of which will hopefully aid advocacy on behalf of racialised communities. The deadly consequences of the new deal to stop the boats, published by Alarmphone, finds that the agreement between the UK and France has led directly to a doubling of drownings in the Channel. And as the historic Sheku Bayoh Public Inquiry restarts in Edinburgh, the Scottish Centre for Crime and Justice Research publish Nothing to See Here? Deaths in Custody and FAIs in Scotland – 2023 which finds that four people die in custody or state settings every week in Scotland, a total of 244 people in 2023.
IRR News Team