Today, Manchester City Council became the first local authority in Britain to pass a motion condemning immigration detention.
The These Walls Must Fall motion was proposed by Moss Side councillor Mahadi Sharif Mahamad, and means that the City Council is now fully behind the campaign. After meeting with local residents in the These Walls Must Fall campaign, councillor Mahamad took the proposal to his fellow councillors.
Councillor Mahamad told These Walls Must Fall campaigners that, as someone who arrived in the UK as a refugee, he knows how difficult it is for people who are locked up indefinitely. The councillor spoke of friends and family who have been held in detention who have described how degrading and difficult it was for them to be held with no knowledge of when they might be released. He said:
“I am supporting this campaign because I believe in ending indefinite immigration detention in this country. It is immoral and inhumane, costly and ineffective. We are a country that prides itself with respect for basic human rights and dignity. Indefinite detention is against our morals and our values. I urge the government to end this immoral and inhumane practice once and for all.”
These Walls Must Fall would like to thank Manchester City councillors, and congratulate the council on being the first to say: enough is enough – immigration detention must end.
If you would like help to start a These Walls Must Fall campaign in your area, or to get your council to propose a These Walls Must Fall motion, get in touch! Meanwhile, whether you are in Manchester or anywhere, you can sign the These Walls Must Fall declaration, and ask your local councillors, MP, anyone and everyone, to sign up to.
Manchester City Council
29 November 2017
Notice of Motion – Ending indefinite immigration detention.
This Council believes that the UK’s immigration detention system is not fit for purpose and the Government must end indefinite detention. Therefore, this Council:
Endorses the These Walls Must Fall Campaign and the declaration.
Calls on the Government to implement the recommendations of the All Party Parliamentary Inquiry into detention.
Asks our local MPs to support the spirit of the motion, to raise the matter in the House of Commons, and to support changes in current laws and procedures to introduce alternatives to detention.
Seeks further support for the motion via the Local Government Association, and by encouraging other Councils in the UK to show their support on this issue.
Proposed by Councillor Sharif Mahamad, Seconded by K Simcock, and also signed by Councillors Cookson, Rowles, H Priest and Alijah