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Refugees (Family Reunion) (No.2) Bill

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 10:43 am on 16th March 2018.

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Photo of Bob Neill Bob Neill Chair, Justice Committee 10:43 am, 16th March 2018

My hon. Friend is making a very powerful speech, a great deal of which I agree with. I recognise that the Government have done a great deal in many areas. One of the policy changes in the Bill is really quite modest: it is to make it easier for those who have fled in fear, as he said, to get around the very difficult and onerous requirements to provide documentation in order to access legal aid or exceptional case provisions. As I am sure he will know from his interest in the field, the British Red Cross found that some 74% of all family reunion cases were missing one or more documents. He will also know that someone who is genuinely fleeing in fear frequently does not have time to go through a checklist of documents they might need later. Is not that one of the reasons why this Bill, in a very modest way, improves things in the direction that he has argued for in the past?