Nick Thomas-Symonds – 2021 Comments on Asylum Reform

The comments made by Nick Thomas-Symonds, the Shadow Home Secretary, on 23 March 2021.

The Conservative Party have run our immigration system for 11 years. Conservative failures have led to a processing system that’s appallingly slow, the Windrush scandal, the closing of safe and legal routes, no promised deal with France on boat crossings and a rise in the horrific crime of human trafficking. The Conservative approach has lacked both competence and compassion.

Measures are clearly needed to speed up processes and stop criminal gangs profiting from dangerous crossings. However, we fear these plans will do next to nothing to stop people making dangerous crossings, and risk withdrawing support from desperate people, such as victims of human trafficking. Some of the ideas briefed from the Government have been downright ridiculous – like wave machines in the English Channel and processing people in the Ascension Islands, over 4000 miles away.

These plans also have nothing to say about protecting our borders from dangerous Covid variants or ensuring our NHS has the staff it needs as it recovers.

Labour will study the detail of whatever the Government puts forward and argue for a fair immigration system.