Stopping the Boats: Overview & Reaction to the Illegal Migration Bill

On March 7, Prime Minister Rishi Sunak’s government published the Illegal Migration Bill which would establish a legal duty for authorities to remove anybody who enters the country by irregular means within 28 days. The controversial bill represents the government’s latest attempt to stem the flow of migrants crossing the English Channel to the UK.

The bill is politically significant after Sunak made introducing new laws to stop the so-called small boats one of the government’s five key priorities in January, along with halving inflation, growing the economy, reducing national debt, and cuttingNational Health Service waiting lists. While the legislation could prove popular with voters who are unhappy with the UK’s record levels of net migration and harks back to Brexit promises to take control of the country’s borders, opposition parties, human rights groups, and other critics have voiced concerns about its legality, morality, and practicality.

This Dods Political Intelligence report provides a one-stop guide to the Illegal Migration Bill, including a brief overview of its key elements and expected timeline, and a selection of initial political and stakeholder reaction with links to original sources.

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