During Tuesday’s statement from the Home Secretary on the Government’s new Illegal Migration Bill, Gedling’s Conservative Member of Parliament Tom Randall said in the House of Commons “on behalf of all the residents of Gedling who have raised the issue of small boats with me, may I warmly welcome the Home Secretary’s statement.”
Tom went on to ask the Home Secretary if the new laws will remove people smugglers out of the asylum process “Will she confirm that the forthcoming legislation will end the morally reprehensible practice whereby smugglers are a de facto part of the asylum process, and does she agree that, given the dangers of cross-channel smuggling, a robust approach is right, fair and humane?"
The Home Secretary replied: “One of the root causes of this problem is the proliferation of sophisticated, well co-ordinated and well-resourced criminal gangs operating across transnational boundaries on the continent.
“That is why we have increased resources for the National Crime Agency and increased co-operation and intelligence sharing with the French. Only by working together with our European partners will we be able to smash the business model of the people smugglers.”
Speaking after the introduction of the new laws, Tom said, “Time after time, I’ve been approached by Gedling residents who have asked me: ‘what are you doing about the boats?’
“It’s a reasonable question. The United Kingdom is a hospitable country and over the last few years alone we have taken in those fleeing oppression in Afghanistan, Hong Kong and Syria.
“But people are understandably alarmed at the sight of numerous, dangerous Cross-Channel crossings. The new legislation will deter these crossings by stopping asylum claims from those who come to this country using illegal routes. It’s a tough measure, but it’s necessary and ultimately humane as it will stop perilous sea journeys on makeshift craft. The new legislation has my full support. The boats have got to stop.”