The Immigration Act 2016 and yet more immigration related legislation to come

Posted on Fri 27 May 2016

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Leander Neckles is a freelance equalities consultant.

During 2015 and 2016, we reported on the new Immigration Bill 2015/16 first published on 17/9/15. We also reported on the separate, but associated, proposals for extending charging for NHS services for certain groups of migrants and overseas visitors. We said that the proposals, if implemented, were likely to encourage the hostility, racism, discrimination,  exploitation and serious human rights breaches too often faced by refugees, asylum seekers and the UK’s Black and Minority Ethnic (BME) communities. Equally important, we also argued that the proposals would do nothing to reduce or address the ongoing and increasing humanitarian refugee and migrant crisis. We have produced a detailed briefing paper which:

  • updates readers on the final shape of what is now the Immigration Act 2016;
  • explains why we, the wide range of other organisations, continue to voice serious equalities, human rights and practical concerns about the 2016 Act;
  • explains how the new Act’s provisions build on those contained within the Immigration Act 2014 and previous legislative provisions.

On a separate but related front and to the surprise of many, in the Queen’s Speech on 18th May 2016, the Government announced that new primary legislation would be ‘introduced to ensure that overseas visitors pay for the health treatment they receive at public expense.’[1] On the same day, the Department of Health announced that there would be a delay in publishing the Government’s response to a consultation launched earlier in December 2015 on NHS charging.[2] We hope that it will be possible by July or September 2016 to provide a proper analysis of the new NHS Bill on charging and what the Department of Health is proposing in respect of its consultation ‘Making a fair contribution’.[3]

 To read Overviewing the Immigration Act 2016: Paper One click here.


[1] Source: The Queen’s Speech, 18 May 2016, https://hansard.parliament.uk/lords/2016-05-18/debates/16051852000171/Qu...

[2] The Department of Health's consultation – Making a fair contribution: consultation on the extension of charging overseas visitors and migrants using the NHS in England – was launched on 7 December 2015 and closed on 7 March 2016. The original consultation documentation can be located at:  https://www.gov.uk/government/consultations/overseas-visitors-and-migran...

[3] Publication of this analysis is obviously dependent on publication of the proposed NHS Bill  on charging and also publication of the consultation response by the Government  and Department of Health.