Immigration and Social Security Co-ordination (EU Withdrawal) Bill — New Clause — Leave to Enter: Family Unity and Claims for Asylum — 19 Oct 2020 at 21:15

The majority of MPs voted to allow those in the European Union who wish to make a claim for asylum in the United Kingdom, and who would have been eligible for transfer to the United Kingdom under European Union regulations, to enter the United Kingdom to make their claim. Factors determining eligibility for transfer include reuniting families.

MPs were considering the Immigration and Social Security Co-ordination (EU Withdrawal) Bill.[1][2]

The motion supported by a majority of MPs in this vote was:

  • That this House disagrees with Lords amendment 4

Lords amendment 4[3] began:

  • Insert the following new Clause—
  • "Leave to enter: family unity and claims for asylum
  • (1) For at least such time as a relevant agreement has not been concluded and implemented, a person to whom this section applies must be granted leave to enter the United Kingdom for the purpose of making a claim for asylum.
  • (2) This section applies to a person who—
  • (a) is on the territory of any relevant Member State;
  • (b) makes an application for leave to enter for the purpose of making a claim for asylum; and
  • (c) would, had that person made an application for international protection in that Member State, have been eligible for transfer to the United Kingdom under Regulation (EU) No. 604/2013 by reason of a relevant provision if the United Kingdom remained a party to that Regulation.
  • (3) An application for leave to enter under subsection (2)(c) shall be made in such manner as the Secretary of State may prescribe save that—
  • (a) there shall be no fee for the making of such an application and no requirements may be prescribed that are unreasonable having regard to the purposes of this section and the circumstances of persons to whom it applies;
  • (b) in relation to such applications, the Secretary of State shall make arrangements to ensure that applicants receive a decision regarding their application no later than two months from the date of submission of the application.
  • (4) A claim for asylum made under subsection (2)(b) must remain pending throughout such time as no decision has been made on it or during which an appeal could be brought within such time as may be prescribed for the bringing of any appeal against a decision made on a claim or during which any such appeal remains pending for the purposes of section 104 of the Nationality, Immigration and Asylum Act 2002 (pending appeal); and a claim for asylum remains one on which no decision has been made during such time as the claim has been made to the Secretary of State and has not been granted, refused, abandoned or withdrawn.
  • (5) The Secretary of State must, within six months of the day on which this Act is passed, lay before both Houses of Parliament a strategy for ensuring that unaccompanied children on the territory of a relevant Member State continue to be relocated to the United Kingdom, if it is in the child‘s best interests"
  • ...

The rejected new clause continued with further subsections defining the terms used.

When the new clause was proposed in the House of Lords it was accompanied by the following explanatory statement[5] from its proposer:

  • This new Clause aims to ensure that rights under UK law to family reunion, at present covered by the Dublin III Treaty, will continue after the transition period and that unaccompanied child refugees in Europe will have a legal route to sanctuary in the UK.

Regulation (EU) No. 604/2013 was revoked in the UK when the UK left the EU, this occurred via Regulation 54[6] and Schedule 1, Part 2[7], of the Immigration, Nationality and Asylum (EU Exit) Regulations 2019. Regulation (EU) No.604/2013 is known as the Dublin III Regulation or ‘Dublin III’[8].

Chapter III of the regulation[9] gives a high priority to the reuniting of families when determining eligibility for transfer of an individual seeking asylum from one state to another.

Clause 1, in Part 1, of the Immigration and Social Security Co-ordination (EU Withdrawal) Bill[4] was titled: Repeal of the main retained EU law relating to free movement etc. and stated:

  • Schedule 1 makes provision to—
  • (a) end rights to free movement of persons under retained EU law, including by repealing the main provisions of retained EU law relating to free movement, and
  • (b) end other EU-derived rights, and repeal other retained EU law, relating to immigration.

Explanatory notes to the Bill[2] set out its purpose:

"The purpose of the Immigration and Social Security Co-ordination (EU Withdrawal) Bill (the Bill) is to end free movement of persons in UK law and make European Union (EU), other European Economic Area (EEA) and Swiss citizens, and their family members, subject to UK immigration controls."

the notes[2] also state:

"The Bill protects the status of Irish citizens in the UK when free movement rights end, a status which existed prior to the UK’s membership of the EU."

Debate in Parliament |

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Party Summary

Votes by party, red entries are votes against the majority for that party.

What is Tell? '+1 tell' means that in addition one member of that party was a teller for that division lobby.

What are Boths? An MP can vote both aye and no in the same division. The boths page explains this.

What is Turnout? This is measured against the total membership of the party at the time of the vote.

PartyMajority (Aye)Minority (No)BothTurnout
Alliance0 10100.0%
Con324 (+2 tell) 6091.2%
DUP0 3037.5%
Green0 10100.0%
Independent1 30100.0%
Lab0 187 (+2 tell)094.0%
LDem0 110100.0%
PC0 30100.0%
SDLP0 20100.0%
SNP0 46097.9%
Total:325 263092.2%

Rebel Voters - sorted by name

MPs for which their vote in this division differed from the majority vote of their party. You can see all votes in this division, or every eligible MP who could have voted in this division

Sort by: Name | Constituency | Party | Vote

Sir David AmessSouthend WestCon (front bench)no
Rehman ChishtiGillingham and RainhamConno
David DavisHaltemprice and HowdenConno
Tim LoughtonEast Worthing and ShorehamCon (front bench)no
Jason McCartneyColne ValleyConno
William WraggHazel GroveCon (front bench)no

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