Sunday, 21 June 2009

SiC debated on BBC1 on two Sunday programmes

Following the release of the LSE report last Tuesday commissioned by the mayor, regularisation was debated on two BBC1 programmes Sunday.

First was the Big Questions, which you can watch here for the next seven days. The panel -- Germaine Greer, Fareena Alam and Anne Atkins -- is mostly in favour, as is the studio audience. Neil Jameson, lead organiser of London Citizens, represents Strangers into Citizens, along with an irregular Malaysian migrant called Dee who is a friend of the campaign. The discussion lasts 23 minutes.

Second was the Politics Show: click here (for the next seven days only) to watch Austen Ivereigh, SiC policy director, debate the issue with Gareth Bacon, GLA Assembly member. A brief report starts at 0.43 minutes into the programme; the 5-minute debate begins at 0.45.


  1. Thanks very much for posting the links. Having watched boths shows I think many of those who are against the idea tend to emphasize that irregular migrants have broken the law anyway and for that reason there should not be a way out. So basically they argue that once a law is broken,suffering should be made permanent regardless of what level of braking the law we're talking about. If that is the case then we might be entitled to ask each one of the oppositions whether they have broken the law in any way at all in the past. Say for example have you ever done 35 mph in a 30 zone? if yes so they have actually be banned from driving for life whether they've managed to evade the law at the time or not? So if we are going to have a more fair kind of discussion then we need to take into account the level of the crime. If the punishment for immigrating only to try to build a better life is infinite then what sort of penalty should a serious criminal get? Is it not enough to wait for 8 or 9 years and not be doing anything where you know you could do a constructive life? Is it really because of the crime of having broken the immigration law or is it a colour concerned thing?

  2. Austen writes: thank you for this. The big difference between speeding and emigrating is that the first is morally wrong and the second isn't. And of course, a visa overstayer or refused asylum seeker is committing an administrative offence, not a criminal act. That's why, when SiC talks of "irregular migrants" (as does, thankfully, the LSE report) we are not using a euphemism but a term which more accurately describes the people we are concerned with. The terms "illegal immigrant" and "amnesty" are basically criminal terms, and inappropriate for that reason.