Undocumented Migrants: English Channel

Home Office written question – answered at on 7 May 2024.

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Photo of Diana R. Johnson Diana R. Johnson Chair, Home Affairs Committee, Chair, Home Affairs Committee

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, how many (a) women and (b) girls have arrived in the UK via small boats in each year since 2018.

Photo of Diana R. Johnson Diana R. Johnson Chair, Home Affairs Committee, Chair, Home Affairs Committee

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what assessment he has made of the level of risk to women and girls arriving in the UK via small boats of trafficking for sexual exploitation in 2024.

Photo of Michael Tomlinson Michael Tomlinson Minister of State (Minister for Illegal Migration)

The Home Office publishes statistics on small boat arrivals to the UK in the ‘Irregular migration to the UK statistics’ release. Data on small boat arrivals by year, sex and age group is published in table Irr_D01 of the ‘Irregular migration to the UK detailed datasets’, with the latest data up to the end of December 2023.

Information on how to use the dataset can be found in the ‘Notes’ page of the workbook. Future irregular migration publication release dates can be found on the research and statistics calendar.

No assessment has been made of the risk to woman and girls arriving in the UK via small boats to trafficking for sexual exploitation. However, all individuals arriving on small boats will be assessed on arrival, including assessments to identify vulnerability and safeguarding needs. Where there are indicators of modern slavery, the individual will be referred into the National Referral Mechanism (NRM). The NRM aims to lift victims out of situations of exploitation, provide them with a short period of intensive support and specialist care, and put them in a position where they can begin to rebuild their lives with increased resilience against future exploitation. In the last two years alone almost 30,000 people have had access to the protections of the NRM.

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