Rwanda Bill

Information on the Rwanda Bill

Refugee Rights Organisations Update

UPDATE: Rwanda Bill: Home Office Detention.

Media reports today indicate that the Home Office will commence detaining people subject to removal as it prepares to operationalize removals to Rwanda. It is likely to further create fear and anxiety within asylum seeking communities.

In reality, we don’t know what this will mean in practice regarding the scale of individuals directly impacted by this, it is possible that the numbers detained may be small. However, an additional concern is the potential negative consequences for those that choose to abscond from the Home Office due to fear of detention.

As we are not legal advisors, we cannot comment on individual cases to make assessments or assurances of the likelihood of detention or removal. Nor can we predict who, and how many, are at risk. We also have a responsibility in ensuring that we do not reinforce and contribute to panic amongst groups that may be impacted by this news.

What we can do:
• Continue to provide essential emotional support to those impacted by the fear and anxiety the news will bring.
• Share general information that you can give to anyone who is concerned that they are at risk of detention (see below)
• Signpost to the Right to remain toolkit for up-to-date information and guidance (translations available)
• If someone receives a new letter (dated after 22nd April 2024) referencing decision of inadmissibility signpost to local RS team for casework support
• Follow our existing safeguarding protocols, and escalate to line management if you are unsure. Please also remember to seek support yourself, should you need to discuss the impact that this is having on your wellbeing.

It has been brought to the attention of refugee rights organisations that some people who are Appeal Rights Exhausted Asylum Seekers (refused, end of process) are being phoned by the Home Office this week and offered voluntary returns to Rwanda in exchange for a £3000 payment. 

 The main safety messages from sector organisations are to:

  • Ask the Home Office to put the offer in writing. 
  • Seek legal advice (if possible) before you respond.
  • You do not have to say yes if you do not want to. 

If you receive any calls relating to this, please REFER to their local RS service. We will be monitoring the scale of these calls.