Clause 30 - article 1(a)(2): reasons for persecution

Part of Nationality and Borders Bill – in a Public Bill Committee at 5:13 pm on 26 October 2021.

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I have a short but important point to make. The clause concerns the definition of a particular social group, which is an important concept in refugee law and has been crucial to its ongoing relevance across many decades. The clause is controversial because it makes an important change to how a particular social group is defined. In the House of Lords case of the Secretary of State for the Home Department v. Fornah, a long-standing argument about whether the tests in subsection (3) of the clause should be cumulative or alternative was addressed and it was decided that there was no need to meet both of those conditions; one or the other would suffice. However, in the Bill, the Government have decided to change that approach. It now demands that both conditions are met, and that seems to contradict established case law in this country. I simply ask the Government to explain why they have taken a more restrictive approach.