International impacts of the Hostile Environment

International implications & repercussions

A post-colonial reckoning — on the Windrush scandal.  The    Vidya Ram     May 05, 2018


Caribbean diplomats raise immigration issue with U.K.  The Vidya Ram   April 12, 2018


There are a range of problems caused at the international level by the Hostile Environment, that were clearly not foreseen when it was launched; sadly at operational level, particularly at both entry clearance officers (overseas they come under the Foreign & Commonwealth Office NOT the Home Office) and visa and leave to remain caseworker (Home Office) frontline levels often undertaking legally dubious and diplomatically injurious actions.

Seizure of passports without explanation, and placing legally unjustified refused entry stamps/’signals’ in passports are the two main examples of the above (and are detailed elsewhere in this information resource). Here though we can give an example in the case of a New Zealand (Commonwealth country) citizen, who informed her High Commission in London about the seizure of her passport; the High Commission stating that they should have been contacted first, and that the passport is both the lady’s property and that of the state of New Zealand.

From its onset, the Hostile Environment was always a ‘skin colour’ and anti-‘Commonwealth nations’ phenomenon, and those at Cabinet Permanent Secretary and Permanent Secretaries, especially the Permanent Secretary of the Home Office, and doubtless – on an impact assessment basis — the Permanent Secretary of the Foreign & Commonwealth Office, level must have known as the Home Office and border control Whitehall mandarins considered in 2012 how to implement plans to turn the Hostile Environment into a reality. 

However plans for a Hostile Environment, that must have due to EU membership have been always likely to target first and foremost Commonwealth (former British colonies) nations and peoples, rather than EU ones, were it appears drawn up as early as 2007 – they were left fallow until the occasion of the perfect opportunity to make them a reality presented themselves with Theresa May becoming Home Secretary some years later (see  Disingenuously, never openly/overtly anti-colour skin, the Hostile Environment was in practice from its start to its more recent full scale anti-West Indian/Caribbean, anti-Gurkha, (DNA scandal: ) always clearly a skin-colour orientated racist endeavour by those who shaped and continue to direct the Hostile Environment, from the all-powerful most senior elements of Whitehall. 

Westminster and the government appear to have always been ‘asleep or out to lunch’ so to speak on this, until a partial wake-up call was provided by the ‘Leave’ vote in the Brexit Referendum of the Summer of 2016, when there was a clear vote from Commonwealth originated citizens of the UK to leave the UK, due to feeling picked on and discriminated against by the Home Office and Immigration Tribunal led ‘Hostile Environment.’  

One of the most insidious effects of the Hostile Environment, knowingly/deliberately or unwittingly cultivated by its developers and guarantors, has been pan-UK interracial strife between commonwealth and other non-EU ethnicities, and UK ethnic minority communities from EU nations.  Below are provided some news links (there are Many more and continuing!) on the implications and impacts overseas of the anti-Commonwealth nations and peoples’ emphasis of the Hostile Environment:

At a direct human level, it is important to note here how experiences of overseas nations encountering the Hostile Environment and more overt anti-Commonwealth peoples’ racism actually works on a ‘from here to back home’ parallel communities’ basis at international students’ level. 

This context is mentioned, relevant from here to there/home country’ communication of UK day to day living (which for all too many international visitors, such as international students) involves encounter with both the Hostile Environment ‘paperwork’ level impacts, and those of ‘in the street, in the campus block, racism.’ 

The significance of this experience is that at direct business/trade level, the sharing of the abuses of power & process at the heart of the operational level ‘Hostile environment’ in the UK make for very poor publicity about the merits of the UK to talented overseas students from Commonwealth nations, and back to their governments and higher education institutes.