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Immigration Bill

Part of Bills Presented – in the House of Commons at 6:02 pm on 13th October 2015.

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Photo of Suella Fernandes Suella Fernandes Conservative, Fareham 6:02 pm, 13th October 2015

I welcome that comment whole- heartedly. My professional experience endorses that.

I worked on people smuggling cases. Again, I saw that the regime needed more robust powers in respect of inspection and evidence gathering so that prompt removals could be effected through the right channels.

The new power in clause 30 allows the Secretary of State to cancel what is called section 3C leave. That will go far in widening the removal power when taken together with the extension of section 94B of the Nationality, Immigration and Asylum Act 2002 in respect of the certification of human rights cases. That will enable more prompt removals after a refusal decision has been made. The absence of an in-country appeal right will remove the opportunity to exploit the appeals process extended to individuals in the UK. A reality of the previous regime was that the extensive number of appeal rights protracted the time that people spent in this country unlawfully.

More widely, we must talk about the impact of immigration. I applaud the courage of the Government in dealing with this matter in a compassionate, proportionate and fair way. The cultural impact of immigration cannot be ignored. The pace of immigration, the damaging predominance of multiculturalism, and the lack of integration in some parts of this country are having a damaging effect on social cohesion. A well-integrated immigrant must speak fluent English because that is crucial for developing relationships and gaining employment, and it connects us deeply with others. I therefore welcome the requirement for fluency in English in part 7 of the Bill.

We as a community of parliamentarians must be more courageous when speaking out about matters of integration and what is happening in this country, and when talking about the challenges we all face. The Bill deals with the problem of illegal immigration and tightens up the problem of exploitation, and that is the only way that we will command more confidence in the system and ensure its credibility. Our country is neither open nor closed, but striking the balance is hard. In doing so, it is perfectly reasonable to introduce legislation that encapsulates proportion and compassion. Speaking as the child of immigrants and the beneficiary of immigration, and as a professional, I commend this Bill to the House.