Campaign groups and human rights organisations including New Europeans have stepped up their pressure on the British Government to remove a clause from the new Data Protection Bill that discriminates against migrants and EU27 citizens.
The Immigration Exemption gives the Government the power to remove data protection rights from anyone whose details are being processed for “effective immigration control”.
The effect of this is to create a two-tier data rights regime giving migrants fewer privacy rights than UK citizens, but also its unclear wording can leave everyone worse off.
Welcoming support for the campaign form New Europeans, Gracie Bradley, Policy Officer for Liberty, said:
“Liberty’s been campaigning hard to make sure Brexit doesn't’t roll back our rights – and we were delighted to be able to speak at the New Europeans’ conference about the risks we’re all facing and how we can work together to counter them. We’re equally pleased to have gained a powerful new ally in the fight to defend our data protection rights. Together we can make sure the Government’s immigration exemption never sees the light of day.”
Gracie Bradly set our Liberty's concerns hat our recent conference at Europe House on 16th March - ‘Leaving the EU – Impact on Human Rights’ -
The Bill has the potential to strip millions of EU27 citizens and people caught up in the migration system of their rights.
If passed, the “Immigration Exemption” will mean that all migrants in the UK including EU27citizens will lose their right to access information held by the government. This information could be shared with other departments or private corporations, for example, and there would be no way of finding out.
The Bill will make it harder for EU27citizens applying for settled status to find out what information is held on them by the Home Office.
Unusually, the Bill was introduced in the House of Lords and is now at Report Stage in the Commons.
This is very late in the process but there is still time to challenge your MP to overturn the exemption before the bill becomes law.
For more information and how to get involved in Liberty’s campaign to defend our data protection rights, see here.
To join New Europeans as a member and fight this and similar campaigns, click here.
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