A new blog post by Dr Rebecca Yeo on Migration Mobilities Bristol features RAPAR's former Chair, Manjeet Kaur.
Dr Yeo's blog - Disablement and resistance in the British immigration system - explores the intersections between migration policy and disability, argues that '[r]estricted access to services and support is a central tool of immigration policy' and asserts a need for a social model of immigration.
The blog begins:
The distinction between deserving and undeserving individuals has always been core to immigration policy in the UK. However, the hostility and restrictions directed at those framed as ‘undeserving’ has steadily increased. The recently introduced Illegal Migration Bill takes these restrictions to a new level to include detaining and preventing new arrivals from even claiming asylum. The need to build effective opposition has never been more urgent. With this goal, it is important to consider the inequities of the current system, possible alternative approaches to resistance and the barriers that must be addressed.
Manjeet is quoted in the piece:
The social model of disability was developed by Disabled people rather than charitable organisations. However, when people are struggling for immediate survival, there is little capacity to lead resistance. As activist Manjeet Kaur explained to me just months before she died, in the face of immediate struggles as a Disabled asylum seeker, ‘I don’t have the energy… I myself am in a floating boat, I can anytime fall down.’ The capacity for solidarity from the wider Disabled people’s movement is reduced by lack of information and individual struggles in the context of an ever more punitive welfare state. The mantra of the Disabled people’s movement ‘nothing about us, without us’ is as valid as ever, however, the solidarity of allies has never been so important.
Read the full blog here.