| ARC | Asylum Rights Campaign |
A consortium of organisations, committed to upholding the right to seek and enjoy asylum

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About us

ARC members believe that people seeking asylum should be treated justly with dignity and fairness. The current debate and treatment of people seeking asylum is damaging not only for vulnerable individuals but for the fabric of our society.

ARC functions as an information sharing network that informs the campaigning work of its members. It is also a forum for discussion with campaigning strategies in mind.

ARC was set up in 1993 in order to co-ordinate and facilitate campaigning efforts of a number of organisations in response to the government's legislative attempts to restrict the right to asylum and curtail rights and entitlements of people seeking asylum already in the UK.

What do we do?

ARC members meet once a month to share information about developments and research in the field and coordinate their responses in terms of lobbying and campaigning. Occasionally members decide to act as ARC and make statements, write press releases and letters to government ministers or departments. We also have specialist sub-groups on a number of key concerns.

In order to provide a joint platform for strategic campaigning ARC members fundraise, commission and have jointly worked on a strategic policy and practice document called Providing Protection in the 21st Century - Refugee rights at the heart of asylum policy, originally produced in 1997 and updated in 2004. The aim of the report was to move from the mere criticism of the governments policies and instead provide a positive and practical alternative vision for a UK based asylum system.

Why do we do it?

ARC believes that access to a credible, fair and just asylum determination procedure is an essential mechanism in the exercise of fundamental human rights, as defined by international human rights law and norms.

ARC members are concerned that in the past decade, there have been 5 Acts of Parliament and a raft of measures that have eroded these rights to the point of being unobtainable.

Equally, the treatment of those people seeking asylum who have been able to overcome all the obstacles erected by the Governments, has become intolerable.

They are denied:

  • means to survive
  • the right to work
  • access to legal advice

They are often forcibly dispersed or detained, for merely administrative purposes.

The media coverage on the issue of asylum, has deteriorated from the uninformed to the grotesque through the use of openly hostile and abusive language. People seeking asylum are demonised and dehumanised and blamed for every problem in British society. A recent Article 19 study recorded 51 negative label used by the British media to describe people seeking asylum.

Public sentiment towards people seeking asylum has moved from occasional harassment towards a marked increase in racially motivated attacks, with extreme cases ending in murder.

We believe that in addition to all the hard work member agencies do on a day to day basis we need to focus on campaigning in order to encourage the government, the media and the general public to treat people seeking asylum with dignity and fairness and to counteract the negative stereotyping and further stigmatising of vulnerable members of our society.

What can you do?

ARC members together as well as individually, inform, campaign and lobby for the rights of people seeking asylum . We welcome and encourage support from around the country and would recommend you contact them to offer your support.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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