Migration is not a problem to be solved. It is a reality to be managed so that those who migrate and the communities they join are both able to benefit from the inevitable movement of people. This requires cooperation across borders and the UK should seek to be a force for positive change in the global migration system.

As people become more mobile and as the growing climate crisis forces more of humanity to move, UK foreign policy can help build a just and progressive global system for managing the movement of people.

Current arrangements, however, see the UK government providing training, finance and technology to some of the world’s most brutal and repressive regimes so that they can prevent their own citizens from attempting to leave their shores. Those who flee and are caught are often subject to extreme violence and, in some cases, are sold by ruthless militia into slavery.
The UK can rebuild its role in the world by leading in the creation of a global system of cooperative refugee protection, strengthening regional mechanisms for free movement within the global south and ensuring that global arrangements are resilient in the face of the climate crisis.

"[The Global Compact] can guide us from a reactive to a proactive mode. It can help us to draw out the benefits of migration, and mitigate the risks. It can provide a new platform for cooperation."

Miroslav Lajcáck, President of the 72nd session of the UN General Assembly

Our recommendations

  • Champion a new, Europe-wide system for collaboration and cooperation on asylum management
  • Undertake to alleviate some of the pressure on states such as Greece and Italy through the relocation of up to 10,000 seekers of asylum
  • Work with French authorities to establish a joint task force to process all asylum claimants currently homeless in northern France
  • Guarantee safe passage for all children and those adults with a right to enter the UK currently living in northern France
  • Commit to process, fairly and efficiently, all asylum claims made on UK soil
  • Cease participation in the Khartoum and Rabat Processes and ensure that all bilateral or multilateral agreements include clear, robust safeguards for human rights
  • Invest diplomatic resources in the development and ratification of a truly effective, progressive Global Compact for migration
  • Introduce a Green New Deal so that climate emissions are radically reduced whilst ensuring that our economy is transformed and that those countries and communities on the front lines of the climate crisis are helped to mitigate its effects by the countries where wealth and emissions are concentrated

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