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Theresa May's Wobbly Week

by Dominic 22/06/2012 14:20:00

The Home Secretary Theresa May experienced an uncertain week last week. At the start of the week, Mrs May went out on a limb to obtain the support of the Parliament for her message to judges over the exploitation by foreign criminals of the right to family life, she received unanimous support.

While this would normally be seen as a substantial victory in her efforts to enforce a more stable UK immigration system, Mrs May's week was quickly undermined after becoming only the second Home Secretary in British legal history to be held in contempt of court.


Home Secretary gets parliamentary support

The Home Secretary Theresa May has received the support of the Parliament over her recommendation to British judges to prioritise deportation over the use of Article 8 of the European Convention on Human Rights (ECHR)...read more.

Theresa May slams City critics

The Home Secretary Theresa May has rebuffed comments made by British businesses that the Coalition's immigration restrictions are hurting the UK's international reputation...read more.

Theresa May in contempt of court over immigration case

After a home secretary-led motion by the Parliament to urge judges not to prioritise foreign criminals' rights to family life over deportation, the Supreme Court has passed judgement in five deportation appeals, upholding only one...read more.


Home Secretary gets parliamentary support

 

Parliament supported
Mrs May's proposal.

The Home Secretary Theresa May has received the support of the Parliament over her recommendation to British judges to prioritise deportation over the use of Article 8 of the European Convention on Human Rights (ECHR).

Article 8 guarantees a person 'the right to family life' but Mrs May contends that the rule has been exploited too many times in recent years by foreign criminals to avoid deportation.

Mrs May asked the Parliament for their support in making the Government's displeasure at judge's rulings known; after over four hours of debate, MPs unanimously supported the motion.

The Home Office wants judges to consider overturning deportation orders for foreign criminals only in 'exceptional circumstances' which include the sole responsibility of a child and a 'genuine and lasting relationship' with a British citizen.

The Home Secretary had previously said that if judges did not heed the Parliament's recommendations, she would consider introducing primary legislation which could directly contradict the ECHR.

The Home Office says it was not legally required to have parliamentary approval for the recommendations but that Mrs May wanted "to give a clear message to courts about how Parliament believes Article 8 should be interpreted, the stronger the voice from Parliament, the better the message will be".

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Theresa May slams City critics

The Home Secretary Theresa May has rebuffed comments made by British businesses that the Coalition's immigration restrictions are hurting the UK's international reputation.

Immigration was a major factor in the Conservative's election campaign in 2010, accusing Labour of having lax immigration policies, the Conservatives promised to reduce net migration figures from approximately 250,000 to the 'tens of thousands' by the time of the next general election.

In line with this, the Home Office, led by the Home Secretary Theresa May and Immigration Minister Damian Green, has made substantial changes to UK visa and immigration policies which have ostensibly been to tackle abuse of the system, but which have left many claiming the measures are too far.

The changes have so far included annual limits on the number of foreign workers who can enter the country each year in certain occupations, an extension on waiting periods before foreign citizens can apply for settlement, a proposed limit on Intra Company Transfers and salary thresholds on British citizens wanting to bring in a foreign partner.

However, businesses feel these changes limit the ability to bring in highly skilled foreign workers who can help companies expand, contribute better to the British economy, create jobs for British citizens and improve the country's international reputation...

...to read the rest of this story, click here.

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Theresa May in contempt of court over immigration case

 

Mrs May was held in
contempt of court.

After a home secretary-led motion by the Parliament to urge judges not to prioritise foreign criminals' rights to family life over deportation, the Supreme Court has passed judgement in five deportation appeals, upholding only one.

Judge Barry Cotter, QC, accused Mrs May of 'unacceptable and regrettable behaviour' after ignoring a legal agreement to release Algerian national Aziz Lamari when it became clear that there was no reasonable likelihood of deportation.

Judge Cotter said there has been the 'most regrettable and unacceptable behaviour' on the part of the Home Secretary and held her in contempt of court, which could have resulted in a fine and even imprisonment if Lamari hadn't been released...

...to read the rest of this story, click here.

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- Dominic Ladden-Powell is the Online Editor for the UK Visa Bureau.

Visa Bureau takes no responsibility and cannot be held accountable for action taken as a result of any information or comment provided on this blog, and we recommend that you always seek a number of opinions before making a decision regarding your migration or visa application. Please refer to the Visa Bureau terms of use for more information.

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