The High Court has just ruled that the Home Office policy of deporting EU citizens sleeping rough in the UK is unlawful.
Deporting homeless EU citizens
Two Polish men and a Latvian man challenged the government’s decision to deport them on the grounds that they were homeless. Justice Lang at the High Court concluded that this policy “discriminated unlawfully against EEA nationals and rough sleepers”.
The Public Law Interest Group, which helped bring the challenge, stated:
Homelessness cannot humanely be dealt with by detaining or forcibly removing homeless people. This practice has been found unlawful and must immediately cease.
This judgement came a day after Theresa May claimed to have the interests of homeless people at heart.
Misleading the public about homelessness
During the latest Prime Minister’s Questions, May tried to make out that homelessness had been worse under Labour, and been improving under consecutive Conservative governments. But Dan Bloom, political reporter at The Daily Mirror, shows why this is misleading. May said:
Statutory homelessness peaked under the Labour government and is down by over 50% since then.
But while homelessness did technically peak under Labour, rates of rough sleeping fell dramatically. Until the Conservatives came to power in 2010, that is. Since then, homelessness has increased by 54%.
Many homeless charities are doing amazing work to provide support for rough sleepers. In contrast, this High Court ruling highlights how backwards the government has it. There’s a better way to deal with vulnerable EU citizens than unlawfully punishing them.
– Read more articles from The Canary on homelessness.
Featured image via screengrab