/ Meanwhile the hostile environment rumbles on

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French Erick 09 Jun 2019

Brexit trench war, Labour’s harmful nostalgia and Tory’s race to rather extreme views should not detract us all from many harmful policies already in place. Harmful at individual level (which I suppose people who are anti-immigration won’t mind) but also harmful at state functional level. 

According to this https://politics.co.uk/news/2019/02/11/hostile-environment-hundreds-of-commonwealth-nationals-evict

were I to look for a place to live at an affordable price I would have a 47% chance of having a harder time than when I first arrived in this country... and I am white! I cannot begin to imagine what people from other background will have had to go through. No lodging, no work... I am a teacher, pupils not having enough teachers as it is. Same in most services, hence harmful to the running of the State.

Even my recently acquired citizenship is no help as the political apparatus is too locked down in ideological masturbation to review and check past decisions... very sad times. The UK has greatly changed compared to when I first arrived here circa August 2004. Maybe I was more optimistic and blinded by youthful ideas... but this was a land of opportunities and striking open-mindedness compared to Southern France.

Any suggestion beyond writing to my MP about reviewing this underhand outrageous outsourcing of immigration control?

editing due to a paragraph not making sense

Post edited at 08:48
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girlymonkey 09 Jun 2019
In reply to French Erick:

I can only apologise on behalf of a country that I used to feel I belonged in.(Despite being British, I no longer feel that I can claim this to be my country.) 

As far as I am concerned, you absolutely belong here and are very welcome. You will, undoubtedly, have contributed more to the UK both in terms of finances and general skills than I have since 2004! 

5
machine 09 Jun 2019
In reply to French Erick:

The current leaders of this country are an absolute embarrassment and are not fit for office. The opposition are even worse. The councils are an absolute disgrace where their executives are pulling in higher wages than the prime minister but delivering even less. We are the laughing stock of Europe. This country needs to take a long hard look at its self and get its priorities right. 

Post edited at 10:39
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Eric9Points 09 Jun 2019
In reply to machine:

The opposition parties would all change immigration policy. At least as far as the electorate would permit them.

We are governed by who we vote for.

1
Eric9Points 09 Jun 2019
In reply to French Erick:

Is France much better? After all Le Pen and her party are nastier than the Brexit party and the government has legislated against what people can wear.

My perception is that most if not all European countries are less welcoming to immigrants than they used to be.

2
French Erick 09 Jun 2019
In reply to Eric9Points:

You are entirely right unfortunately... it has been the case for a while which is one of the things I found so appealing about the UK, or in my case Scotland, when I first moved here.

to Girlymonkey:

 I am ok as in I am not suffering from the culture directly or indirectly. We bought many years ago. However on principle I, we, should combat this pernicious culture on principle but also on pragmatic ground... as a country, UK, and as a home nation, Scotland, we do not currently have the necessary skills to sustain our economy !

either we change the culture and economy radically or we start seeing the truth in how vital migration is to our current set up.

It is however on the principled side that I feel we should disdain such abhorrent policies. Do we think freedom is important, do we hold all human lives dear? If the answer is yes, then ideologically we must fight those policies and this vicious circle of xenophobia and cultivated suspicion.

1
Rob Parsons 09 Jun 2019
In reply to French Erick:

> According to this https://politics.co.uk/news/2019/02/11/hostile-environment-hundreds-of-commonwealth-nationals-evict> were I to look for a place to live at an affordable price I would have a 47% chance of having a harder time than when I first arrived in this country

I don't see that claim in the article you've linked to. Can you explain what you mean?

Ciro 09 Jun 2019
In reply to Rob Parsons:

"In 2017 a survey of 2,800 landlords found that since the introduction of the right to rent rules, 42% of those asked were less likely to rent to someone who didn't have a British passport."

A lot of landlords simply won't be bothered to play the "border guard" role the government expects them to (for free).

Those implementing the process would of course have fully understood this would be a consequence of the policy - it's all about creating an unwelcoming environment for foreign nationals.

1
Rob Parsons 09 Jun 2019
In reply to Ciro:

I still don' t see how that supports French Erick's claim that he would now have  a '47%' chance of having a harder time finding an 'affordable' place to live.

​​​​​​

Post edited at 18:19
1
Rob Parsons 09 Jun 2019
In reply to French Erick:

> Even my recently acquired citizenship is no help as the political apparatus is too locked down in ideological masturbation to review and check past decisions.

Rereading your original post, I don't understand the point you're trying to make here, either.

> Any suggestion beyond writing to my MP about reviewing this underhand outrageous outsourcing of immigration control?

My suggestion is exactly to write to your MP. You could also consider writing to newspapers. 

Rob Parsons 09 Jun 2019
In reply to French Erick:

By the way, according to www.mygov.scot, the 'right to rent' checks don't need to be applied in Scotland, only in England and Wales.

French Erick 09 Jun 2019
In reply to Rob Parsons:

Hi Rob,

I am claiming that this government, as well as the previous one, have put in place unethical policies. Those could also potentially harm the country. This country has now recently lawfully become mine. 

I object to a place in which you almost encourage xenophobia, the figure I quoted isn’t an official figure of what has been accurately measured. It is the result of a survey. We cannot accurately measure this as it hasn’t been in place very long. It is rather safe to assume that it is going to reinforce the ideologically driven current « hostile environment ».

I am asking advice on how I can try to influence government towards truly stopping this institutionalised discrimination. I have already written to my MP. I thank you with your suggestion about papers...though I don’t know yet how to get about this.

Finally, I am fed up with moronic partisan politic completely covering the media. The fact that such policies have been put into place is, in my view, only possible because all eyes are turned somewhere else. This is what I call « ideological masturbation », right now the reality of immigration is not going to go away. Turning our backs to it and pretending it isn’t our problem is not humane, refusing to discuss it properly is putting our heads in the sand, and encouraging a culture and mentality that is so openly against immigration is a dereliction of duty.

Other matters are more important than the anachronistic and simplistic notion that you, and now I, are taking back our sovereignty ! Rapid loss of biodiversity, rapid increase of the gap between rich and poor... actually even discussing the grade of 3 pebbles slabs is more conducive than what is happening with our political elite in Westminster.

I accept that my initial post was not necessarily well constructed despite an attempt at editing it. I hope that this post clarifies my position somewhat and allows you to see whether you agree or disagree with it.

Rob Parsons 10 Jun 2019
In reply to French Erick:

> I am claiming that this government, as well as the previous one, have put in place unethical policies.

There are a lot of what I consider to be unethical policies in the UK. To paraphrase Warren Buffet: a class war has been waged here since the '80s, and the rich have won.

To the specifics of the 'right to rent' legislation: I haven't looked at this in detail, but I guess it makes sense in principle to say that, if a person does not have the right to live in the country, they shouldn't be allowed to take a tenancy. But how that is policed, and how it can be fairly policed, are the obvious practical questions. I have no doubt that the current situation could lead to arbitrary discrimination.

> I am asking advice on how I can try to influence government towards truly stopping this institutionalised discrimination. I have already written to my MP. I thank you with your suggestion about papers...though I don’t know yet how to get about this.

The difficulty with you writing to your own MP on this particular matter is that, since the 'right to rent' rules do not apply in Scotland, you immediately hit the 'West Lothian' question. However it is still a good way to at least raise the issue.

Writing to newpapers is very easy: go to the websites of the papers involved; search for 'Letters To The Editor' (or similar); and get writing. Then, good luck: your letter might get published. Well-crafted letters which stick to the point are favoured.

Ultimately, if you want to change the political direction of travel, you have to get directly involved in politics.

> Other matters are more important than the anachronistic and simplistic notion that you, and now I, are taking back our sovereignty ! Rapid loss of biodiversity, rapid increase of the gap between rich and poor... actually even discussing the grade of 3 pebbles slabs is more conducive than what is happening with our political elite in Westminster.

Brexit has indeed consumed British politics. And we have years of the same thing ahead of us.

Post edited at 13:55
john arran 10 Jun 2019
In reply to Rob Parsons:

>  I guess it makes sense in principle to say that, if a person does not have the right to live in the country, they shouldn't be allowed to take a tenancy. But how that is policed, and how it can be fairly policed, are the obvious practical questions.

You would have hoped that a responsible government would have thought such matters through before introducing the legislation that was always going to cause problems, and if they couldn't see a fair way for it to be policed then not introduce it. Apparently not.

Rob Parsons 10 Jun 2019
In reply to john arran:

I agree.

Pan Ron 10 Jun 2019
In reply to French Erick:

I'm lost.

You are required to prove your right to live in the UK in order to obtain accommodation here.  How is that a problem?  What is outrageous?  Why shouldn't it be incumbent on a landlord to ensure I am legally here before they give me a home, in the same way they must ensure I am legally here before they employ me?  I have to submit to all manner of other checks before becoming a tenant, most of which work to both the landowner and tenants advantage.

Most countries around the world have far more draconian and strict rules in this regard.  We seem to be saying we have rules, but we aren't going to do anything to enforce them because anything we do may be less than 100% effective.

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French Erick 10 Jun 2019
In reply to Pan Ron:

I'll bite.

It is outrageous that a government devolves controversial policies (if you don't want to call tehm unethical) to its population.

It is outrageous that a government would incite its population to act in systematic suspiscious manner towards "others". Racial hatred being fostered.

It is outrageous that a government would decide to devolve matters in a roundabout way to doing it on the cheap. "let the people do it themselves" in a true spirit of "laissez-faire" does not work well as history keeps proving. Supposed rules are ignored, bent or abused. No self respecting government should employ such tactics.

Ultimately, these are my opinion and you may wish/choose to ignore or diminish them.

I find I disagree with the system in place and wish to use my citizen's right to attempt to influence this. I may manage or not... indeed The lothian issue will raise its ugly head (which in turns reinforce my views on a breaking up of the UK. (That merits a thread of its own though).

1
Pan Ron 10 Jun 2019
In reply to French Erick:

> I'll bite.

Its a genuine question, not a troll.  

> It is outrageous that a government devolves controversial policies (if you don't want to call tehm unethical) to its population.

I'm not even sure the policy is controversial.  There are huge numbers of illegal immigrants in the UK.  It seems valid in my opinion to try and police that, for law and order reasons, for reasons of fairness to those trying to legally gain entry to the country and for reasons of the provision of state resources. 

If we oppose random stops in the street, if we don't allow medical staff to check passports, you leave few means to detect people once they have arrived in the UK - something that won't be lost on would-be illegal migrants and people-traffickers outside of the UK.  Cross the border and you are in.

So I see nothing wrong with people's eligibility to reside in the UK being checked at key points in their lives here.  Its not onerous.  I've been subject to it on multiple occaisions. 

> It is outrageous that a government would incite its population to act in systematic suspiscious manner towards "others". Racial hatred being fostered.

Its outrageous that my passport is checked when I come in to the country.  Its outrageous that my bags are scanned for bombs at the airport.  Its outrageous that a policeoffer can ask me to prove who I am.  Its outrageous that when I sat exams my student ID was checked.  Its outrageous that my ID can be checked when buying alcohol or my drivers licence checked when renting a car.

Actually, its not outrageous.  Ensuring I have the right to live in the UK is a pretty acceptable basic check if I am entering in to a legal agreement with a landlord.

> It is outrageous that a government would decide to devolve matters in a roundabout way to doing it on the cheap.

Again, not outrageous.  People who are outraged would be just as outraged if the government did the checking.  They'll be outraged whatever the government does (apart from going open-borders).  How else should people be checked?

> "let the people do it themselves" in a true spirit of "laissez-faire" does not work well as history keeps proving. Supposed rules are ignored, bent or abused. No self respecting government should employ such tactics.

It employs exactly these rules when checking passports prior to employing people, be that your CEO or your nanny.

> Ultimately, these are my opinion and you may wish/choose to ignore or diminish them.

Not sure I'm trying to do either.  I want you to convince me that I've missed something here, because as I see it the policy is entirely fair, right, and in no way racist.  I'd hope you could convince me that my suspicions, which lead me to believe people who oppose these sorts of policy do so not for the reasons they claim but for other political reasons.

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French Erick 10 Jun 2019
In reply to Pan Ron:

I shall try to do so but not now. This, I see, need a more conerted effort on my part.

It is good to be challenged though and I genuinely appreciate your questioning. The outcome can be either, I find a flaw in my reasoning and need to change it, or I learn more about a reasoning that seem correct and I can argue for it better in future.

Now it is my daughter's first violin solo in an orchestral school ensemble (is it evil to say I am already wincing?). I also have a busy fortnight ahead with hosting Foreign teachers for 10 days...just in case this goes quiet- I am not running away.

Alkis 10 Jun 2019
In reply to john arran:

Two words: One is Theresa. The other is May.

Unfortunately, the answer to most things mentioned here are the same two words. Anyone who doubts that should just check her honours list for the year.

Alkis 10 Jun 2019
In reply to Pan Ron:

> I'm not even sure the policy is controversial.  There are huge numbers of illegal immigrants in the UK.  It seems valid in my opinion to try and police that, for law and order reasons, for reasons of fairness to those trying to legally gain entry to the country and for reasons of the provision of state resources. 

Nothing controversial about the idea itself. The implementation is the problem. It should be the government's job to police, even if landlords are supposed to order the checks. In other words, there should be a service that is free to landlords to check the immigration status of potential tenants. Minimal faff, no cost. Landlords would use it and that is that. Instead they offset the cost to landlords, who predictably immediately moved to curb that cost by rejecting the tenancy applications at the earliest opportunity.

Post edited at 17:49
French Erick 10 Jun 2019
In reply to Pan Ron:

I think that Iwill try to refute the idea that there are so many illegal immigrants. Also that "illegal" has become invisible and now it is just "immigrant" that remains.

I'll need to find research and quote credible links. That will take time.

Rob Parsons 10 Jun 2019
In reply to Pan Ron:

> You are required to prove your right to live in the UK in order to obtain accommodation here.  How is that a problem? 

One problem alluded to in the linked piece is that, in a seller's market for rented property, it could lead to unfair discrimination: a lazy letting agent might simply not bother to let to anybody who can't produce a UK passport.


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