Alongside the criminal justice system, the immigration regime, including so-called hostile environment policies, serves only to protect the most powerful and their private interests. A ‘justice’ system that punishes rather than supports someone fleeing persecution, and simultaneously persecutes those who protest this injustice, is not a system that desires justice. This is a system which seeks to control those who are black, brown, migrants, LGBTQ people, those with disabilities, and those who dissent from that oppressive agenda. Hostile environment immigration policies result in many survivors who are migrants being trapped in abusive relationships, unable to report due to fear of detention and deportation. When the Stansted 15 carried out their action, they knew that one of those on board the flight was a lesbian threatened with death on arrival. Many detainees in immigration removal centre Yarl’s Wood are survivors of physical and sexual violence and fear further gender-based violence, or even murder, if they are not permitted to stay in the UK. Many also experience gender-based violence during their time in detention and/or as a direct result of carceral and immigration controls in this country. The struggle against migration controls is a struggle against white supremacist and patriarchal structures both in the UK and across borders, and we embrace the Stansted 15 as our allies in the fight against these oppressive structures. Consistently, groups like End Deportations, Detained Voices, SOAS Detainee Support, Unfollow MFJ and Lesbians & Gays Support the Migrants have called attention to the violence of the immigration regime, especially hostile environment policies.

Sisters Uncut in Sisters stand with the Stansted 15 (Sistersuncut)

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