Illegal Migration Bill 'unethical' says RCPsych President Dr Adrian James

Press release
26 April 2023

Yesterday the Illegal Migration Bill passed through the House of Commons and will now move to the House of Lords.

In response Dr Adrian James, President of the Royal College of Psychiatrists, said:

“We are greatly concerned that this new legislation will have potentially devastating consequences for the mental health of those seeking asylum in the UK. Many of these people will have experienced significant trauma in the countries from which they have fled, and it is important that the legislation acknowledges this by putting in place adequate safeguards and provisions to meet these needs.

“It is because of this, that we share the concerns of many organisations about the ways in which the Bill threatens the global refugee protection, through its incompatibility with the 1951 Refugee Convention.

“The Bill is not compatible with the fundamental medical principle of doing no harm and we therefore consider it to be unethical.”

The Royal College signed a joint letter along with over 840 UK-based healthcare professionals, expressing our concerns about the health implications of ongoing plans to forcibly remove individuals seeking protection in the United Kingdom to Rwanda.

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