human rights

1,694 petitions

Update posted 19 hours ago

Petition to home office

Let's make International Child Abduction by deceit a criminal offence in the UK

We, the undersigned, call on HM Government to bring forward legislation to make it a criminal offence to organise the illegal retention of a child or children overseas. Background: It is likely to come as a surprise to many, but, at present organising the illegal retention of a child or children overseas is not a criminal offence in the UK, whilst international child abduction is. The difference is slight but significant. A parent who deceives the other about their true intentions can easily gain consent to visit family for a claimed holiday. Then they continue to execute their plan and do not return. A left behind parent if they are lucky may have their children in a country which is a signatory to the Hague convention. This convention is in place to enable a relatively quick legal process to take place to establish which country the rest of the clear differences between the parents should be resolved. Even when a court in an overseas country rules that a child or children have been illegally retained, if the parent who orchestrated the situation returns to the 'country of domicile' (UK for the purposes of this petition), any contact arrangements are viewed as a civil matter and have to go through the family courts. In my personal case, my daughter was taken at 13 months of age, returned to the UK over 6 months later once a court had ruled that she had been illegally retained. Mediation was refused, and overnight stays were only 'agreed' at the doors of the courts 5 months after she was back in the UK. In subsequent proceedings Leave to Remove was granted. She is now overseas and under a different legal jurisdiction. For almost the entirety of the 2nd year of my daughter's life she was denied meaningful contact with her father through no choice of hers or mine. I believe that if changes were brought into legislation it would be easier for child protection measures to be in place to ensure a regime of meaningful contact with the left behind parent to start as soon as practicably possible on the return of the child(ren) to the UK. The psychological impact, sense of loss and 'living bereavement' that having your own child(ren) effectively cut out of your life is second to none. Even more so when it has been done in a very planned fashion, compounded with the subsequent consent of society via the family courts if Leave to Remove is granted. More and more awareness is growing on the impact of childhood trauma on the development of their minds. Indeed, the patterns of behaviour of parents who take children in this fashion are eerily similar and bear the hallmarks of coercive control. Despite having been married with my daughter's mother when she was born, in all meaningful senses I have been stripped of any rights with regards to being a father. My daughter has no rights that it appears can be upheld for contact. These issues may well be familiar to parents who have been through a challenging separation. Reunite – – are a fantastic charity that have been of huge assistance along the way. I have been privileged to meet with many other wonderful people who have sadly trodden a similar path. It is only in raising awareness of these issues that we as a society can start to try to address them, and hopefully not subject other children and parents to similar pain in the future. Given the very real risks of having all contact cut between a left behind parent and their child, few who are subjected to this trauma are able to reach a position where they feel comfortable speaking out. I am no longer afraid, and will no longer be silenced by threats or intimidation. 

Jon Irwin
1,005 supporters
Started 1 day ago

Petition to UK Parliament, home office, UK Government

Home Office's 'Review' of using Section 322(5) is over-delayed,leaving applicants in Limbo

We are migrants from Tier 1 Community (Highly skilled migrants) who have been living in this country for over a decade. We all are qualified with atleast Master’s degree and have worked hard to contribute in the growth and economy of the Great Britain. Our children are born here, they go to school and we are fully integrated in this society. Our ILR visa applications were refused by the SSHD using disproportionate use of Section 322(5), which was designed for criminals, rapists, war crimes or threat to national security. The debate was also chaired in the Westminster Parliament by Hon Alison Thewliss MP on 13th June 2018. Immigration Minister promised the Review of these applications in May 2018 in the Select Committee Meeting but it has been over 7 months now, the review has not been published yet. All the pending applications, Judicial Reviews, Administrative Reviews and consent orders are on hold by the Home Office for ~2 years, due to the review is not published. For all these pending applications, Home Office is writing back to applicants that it will take more time than usual since they are conducting the review. These people in Judicial Review have No “Right to Work” in the UK. These applicants are fighting their cases in the courts while feeding their children, by selling their assets or borrowing funds from family and friends. We have lost our loved ones in back home and were unable to attend the funerals due to Home Office retaining our travel documents for over two years. In the parliamentary debate, the Immigration Minister Caroline Nokes announced that the full Review of these cases will be conducted on 1671 applications, which should not take more than a few weeks by an organization like Home Office. Hundreds (if not thousands) of families are in limbo and waiting for their application outcome which are delayed due to this review. The applicants who had appeal rights, most of our appeals are successful in the FTT courts since January 2018 till now. As a reward, SSHD has started challenging all those FTT successful appeals and Judicial Reviews in the higher courts, without any merits. This means that those applicants who proved their innocence in the FTT/UTT, will wait for another year to prove themselves in the UTT. The conclusion of many judgements is that the SSHD’s decision to invoke section 322(5) is inconsistent with her own policy guidance. We also had a petition on 38 degrees with approximately 100K signatures: We request the Immigration Minister Caroline Nokes, Sajid Javed MP, and all the respected Parliamentarians to please look into this issue and provide us some relief. We also have families and children same like you all have, and we are suffering a lot due to these delays.    

Tier 1 Community
698 supporters
Update posted 2 days ago

Petition to Rt Hon Theresa May, Rt Hon Jeremy Corbyn, Boris Johnson MP


  After living here for five and a half years, my husband and I were informed that our visa applications for Indefinite Leave to Stay had been declined. The reasons given were: "We have not given sufficient proof that we are proficient in English and that despite passing our Life in the UK tests, which state we reached the required level for the purpose of obtaining Indefinite Leave to stay in the UK, we do not have sufficient knowledge of life in the UK!" We were ill advised as to whether we were required to write an English test due to our origins and the fact English was our home language.  My husband, Clive, supplied his original certificates from Cambridge and City of Guild London where it shows he passed English. I supplied certificates from Blount Commercial Academy were it shows a first class pass in English. I also supplied them with proof that I attended a week Fraud Conference at Cambridge University and that was obviously all in English. We have now been in the UK for seven years, having spent the last two years fighting to remain here, in the country we call home! I was born and raised in Rhodesia (now Zimbabwe) before UDI was declared. My husband Clive was born in South Africa but he went to Rhodesia when he was about 5 months old. Clive's father was transferred there after making guns for Britain during the second world war. My mother is Rhodesian born and bred. Her grandfather was a Grenadier Guard and was sent to South Africa to fight for Britain in the Boer War. His sons were born there, one of them being my grandfather, hence the reason we were born in Africa. My step father (who will always be my father) adopted me and my siblings when we were very young and so I was granted an Ancestral Visa and my husband a spousal visa. My father left Britain when he was about 19 years having been offered a position in Mozambique. He volunteered his services, aged twenty,  when the second world war broke out and was in the Southern Rhodesian Armoured Car Division, ending the war in Italy. Britain was keen to develop the colonies and so Dad  was given a farm in Rhodesia for his services during the war. This was a massive incentive for him to stay in Africa. I have an inherent fear of having to return to South Africa because of all the violence there now, which is where we will be sent, if deported.  Having lived through the Rhodesian war and experienced horrors there, plus the fact I lived in South Africa after fleeing Rhodesia, I have nightmares on a regular basis of what happened. My mum was attacked in Rhodesia and sustained injuries, one of which has left her totally deaf in her left ear. I was attacked sitting in my car in South Africa. I fought back and ended up cuts and bruises as well as a wrist broken in three places. We just cannot go back to Africa! Everything we own is here in the UK which we have made our home! Terry Ford, my eldest brother (Dad's only son) was brutally murdered on his farm in Zimbabwe after being beaten and tortured. His faithful companion, Squeak, went everywhere with Terry. He refused to leave Terry's battered body and remained curled up next to his master for hours. Squeak was really very traumatised by what he saw happen to Terry. Terry was farming in Rhodesia, near Salisbury (now Harare) in the Norton area. Robert Mugabe’s sister visited him and wanted his farm. Terry said no and she said " I am Mugabe's sister and what I want I get". Terry was brutally murdered on the farm not long after that. His death made international headlines and members of the family were plagued by the press. Terry was an amazing brother and my siblings and I loved him dearly. He was a gentle giant with an amazing sense of humour.  My Father suffered a number of strokes after Terry's murder, choosing not to accept his gruesome death for over a year. We were finally able to bring him back to the UK (he was British) in November 2010. Our schooling was British, our exams were British and marked in the UK. Our upbringing was very British. Coming here to the UK was like coming home for us. We have worked hard and bought a lovely home in Melbourne, Derby. It has an annex so my parents could live with us and I could care for them. My parents came with us as Mugabe had stopped all pensions and medical aid and they had nothing. We have taken care of them for the past 16 years. Clive has an excellent job as an Estimator for an Engineering Company in Derbyshire. We have settled here, we are happy here and we are safe here. Our family can never return to Zimbabwe and we have nothing left in South Africa to return to. We have never once asked anyone to support us. We pay our taxes, our NI and our rates and taxes. I take care of my ailing Mum (I am her registered, full time carer). Dad sadly passed away just over four years ago. My elderly mother has dementia and other debilitating medical problems. With her dementia, she relies on me to do most things for her. There will be no family to take care of her if we are deported. The fact that we grew up in Rhodesia and were brought up in the British way under British rule for many years does not appear to count for much, sadly. Our British roots also seem to count for nothing. We have now been granted 30 month "Leave to Remain" visas, eighteen months now remaining. I was advised to find a job of some sorts as being a carer is not considered a job for Indefinite Leave to Remain and I am the main applicant! I shall continue to take care of Mum, whilst working part time at our local SPAR. I am only 5 minutes walk from home should Mum need me. After two year of hell, we are blessed to still be here. I have subsequently suffered a heart attack due to the on going pressure and am now recovering from it. OUR FIGHT IS NOT OVER! WE WILL NOT GIVE UP! Please support Yvonne and Clive by joining their Facebook page:

Yvonne Karusseit
17,661 supporters