Tuesday, 4 August 2015

Is there a migration crisis at Calais

Many newspapers have over the last few weeks referred to a siege and migration crisis at Calais
 But is there really a crisis - here are some recommended academic resources for exploring the issues.

Certainly Kent County Council has released statements  about the strain on its social services in copying with asylum seekers. Its website also details extra measures being taken to create extra capacity at reception areas for unaccompanied children.

The Road Haulage Association is critical of the government response and estimates costs to the industry of £5. Its website also has news stories and petitions about the situation.

For responses from the British government see the UK.gov publications. website
the most recent statement from the July 31st Cobra meeting. pledged improved fencing and safety procedures. UK travel advice is also online. on the 10 Downing street website with updates.

For further discussion see the Home Affairs select Committee which recently held a special session of evidence in parliament. This forms part of a larger ongoing immigration inquiry.

The think tank Migration Watch also believes the situation is in crisis
However other research bodies have tried to put this in context. A 2014 paper by the Migration Observatory tries to provide background on the context and the concerns.

The Refugee Council also disputes claims and myths about asylum seekers entering the UK. Its website contains papers discussing the levels of financial support offered to asylum seekers.

Check Eurostat to find data on the number of asylum applications received in the UK and consider how these compare with other countries.In the last update from May 2015. The highest number received was in Germany 202,815 in 2014, compared with 31,945 in the UK,
The UNHCR website also gives an overview of the situation in Europe and the UK contribution.Its recent report on refugees in the Mediterranean region sets the situation in a broader refugee context.

For criticism of the handling of the situation see Calais Migrant solidarity whose website has videos and statements of police and border brutality.

The conversation blog is presenting discussion from academics. According to Nando Sigona University of Birmingham the situation should also be viewed as part of a global refugee crisis. Northumbria University, examines the representation of the story in the media and social media.

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