As the Nationality and Borders Bill goes to Second Reading in the House of Lords today, PLP and JUSTICE set out how access to justice and the rule of law are undermined.

Read the full briefing

Contrary to the Home Secretary’s stated intention of ‘ensuring access to justice and upholding the rule of law’, the Nationality and Borders Bill fails to address the urgent issues necessary to improve the current system.

It fails, in part, because the Bill does not address the need for access to proper legal advice, better first-instance decision making, and a properly funded courts and tribunals system.

Instead, the Bill contains a series of provisions which makes these problems worse, including:

  • Weakening appeal rights despite high-levels of wrong initial decisions
  • Requiring  judges and Home Office caseworkers to give “minimal weight” to some evidence provided by legitimate asylum seekers
  • Creating  fast-track processes based on policies  found to be  unlawful by senior judges;
  • Increasing  arbitrary powers of the Home Secretary, such as the authority to require certain cases to be heard artificially quickly, aggravating the risk of rushed and illegal outcomes.

Read JUSTICE Barrister Ellen Lefley writing in Free Movement in a joint piece with PLP on six aspects of the Bill that must be changed to ensure a fair system