The Daily Mail is reporting that posters are appearing in Calais informing migrants that they should lie about their sexuality to gain asylum in the UK.
The paper is claiming that a ‘how-to’ guide has been glued to the entrance of the migrant camp named ‘The Jungle’ explaining in Arabic and English that : “Migrants are told to choose a ‘category’ which proves that their life is in danger in their homeland. Reasons given include ‘race and religion’ and ‘being gay in some countries’.”
Strangely the Mail has failed to provide any photographic evidence of this poster.
UK Lesbian & Gay Immigration Group, a charity dedicated to supporting, and advocating for the rights of, lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people seeking asylum in the UK has responded to this story.
Paul Dillane their Executive Director said : “There is no significant evidence available that demonstrates people are lying about their sexuality in order to claim asylum let alone that they are successful in doing so. The idea that seeking asylum on those grounds is an easy option is nonsense.
“In fact, LGBT people face significant obstacles in navigating the complex and frequently unsympathetic UK asylum system. Many LGBT people who are at real risk of persecution have been wrongly refused refugee protection in the UK due to poor standards of Home Office decision-making.
“This story is a further distraction from the real issue at hand: the humanitarian needs of several thousand men, women and children, many of whom have fled war and persecution, and are living in squalor in the heart of Western Europe.”
“UKLGIG urges the government to demonstrate leadership and compassion in responding to the situation which exists in Calais and to advance the UK’s role in protecting those who seek asylum in this country and who are in need of assistance abroad.”
If you want more information about UKLGIG go to their website: uklgig.org.uk
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Words Iona McGregor – Nelson, @i0na95