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07 September 2018

MPs debate TOEIC: “Britain’s forgotten immigration scandal”

3 mins

This week MPs in Westminster debated the TOEIC scandal.  MPs strongly condemned the actions of the Home Office in curtailing the leave to remain of tens of thousands of individuals, and called for an independent inquiry to establish what has gone wrong.

Wes Streeting, MP for Ilford North, introducing the debate said:

We are here to discuss Britain’s forgotten immigration scandal, which has seen thousands of international students wrongly deported and tens of thousands more left in limbo. Their lives have been plunged into chaos by a Government who have effectively branded them all cheats, defied the principles of natural justice and created a hostile environment for international students.

The injustice is grave and the numbers affected are huge. This scandal should have been plastered on the front page of every national newspaper. It is bad enough that those students have been denied access to justice through appeal. They should have been given at least some sense of justice through the disinfectant of sunlight.

The Home Office and ETS—the grubby contractor at the centre of this scandal—have serious questions to answer about their conduct in all this. It is clear that the Home Office is persisting with creating a hostile environment for international students, hoping that, by dragging it out for as long as possible, it will cause students to simply give up and go home. The judicial criticism of senior civil servants’ and the Home Office’s approach should be a source of professional embarrassment for everyone involved; it is a global embarrassment to our country.

We are now four years on from the “Panorama” investigation, and the Government have had long enough. Let these students sit their tests. Let them clear their names. Let them get on with their lives.

Mike Gapes, MP for Ilford South added:

this is a bigger scandal than Windrush in terms of the number of individuals removed from the country and whose livelihoods are being destroyed by anguish and despair.

Bindmans acts for a number of individuals who have been affected by the TOEIC scandal, and has worked with the National Union of Students to prepare a number of reports on the issue including a briefing to MPs in advance of this debate (which can be accessed on this page by clicking on the PDF) A debate pack was produced by Parliamentary staff can also be found here.

Have you been a victim of the TOEIC scandal? We have launched the TOEIC Justice Project to provide you with the information, resources, and support you need to help with your fight for justice.

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