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Evening Post helps Immigration Service harass East Midlands asylum-seekers

Rat on a media rat | 11.10.2006 10:15 | Refugee Week 2006 | Analysis | Migration | Repression

An Nottingham Evening Post reporter joins the Immigration service to find illegal working at local car washes and writes a most despicable article (Evening Post, 10th October 2006, page 5), online at:

Immigration yellow vests make Evening Post journalist feel like a big boy
Immigration yellow vests make Evening Post journalist feel like a big boy

Why is this report so bad?

Firstly the article is, on the face of it, about finding asylum-seekers who are working illegally. Their terrible crime? - washing cars to get money because the government won't let people who are escaping persecution support themselves here.

But then the mud-slinging starts...

The article begins with an completely unrelated reference to a Turkish people-smuggling news story. That has got nothing to do with asylum-seekers we are supposedly looking after here in Nottingham.

Secondly, is uses the emotive term 'illegal immigrant' when this is actually only about cash-in-hand working - muddying the fact that people are claiming asylum quite legitimately. It is only the working that is currently not allowed by a crazy government policy.

Worse still, following the remark 'Before setting off, he recommended that everyone - journalist and photographer included - don a stab vest.' it lets the Immigration Service get away with racist remarks like "There is a desperation among some nationalities who perhaps don't value life as highly and don't want to be caught," he said. "There have been far, far too many incidents where you would have needed a stab-proof vest."

This just paints all asylum-seekers as violent. If there is any deperation, it is the need for people to be able to have some money to live on, perhaps support children, whatever - the link to violence is just there to shock the reader, and just plays into government and right-wing fear-mongering tactics. The article also manages to get in some remark about the Immigration Service operations tackling 'even terrorism', another smear by association?

There is no journalism in this article worthy of the name. James Smith, the author, is just a lackey of the Immigration Services. He probably enjoyed his ride around with men in yellow jackets, and then printed whatever story was fed to him.

There are some serious problems with government policy on asylum-seekers not being able to work. Cash-in-hand pay is likely to be low and working conditions are likely to be poor. Many asylum seekers have skills and experiences they are currently not allowed to share with us. We are poorer for it. We certainly do not need some journalist idiot making their lives more difficult than they already are.

Rat on a media rat


Web link to article mentioned above

11.10.2006 10:28

Note that the title tag of this page (top of browser) is:
"The high profile case of the Turkish people-smuggler sentenced in London last week highlighted the issue of illegal immigrants in the UK. But there are much smaller operations going on to tackle the problem. JAMES SMITH joined immigration officers and police on a morning of raids."

Main Evening Post site

Oh, and there is a letters page too ...

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