Domestic Abuse Bill

Southall Black Sisters Annex 4 (DAB18D)

Amendment s 1 and 2 : T o extend provision for indefinite leave to remain under the immigration rules to any migrant survivor of domestic abuse in the United Kingdom; and to extend the scope and duration of the destitute domestic violence concession accordingly.

To move the following Clause – 

 

             Victim s of domestic abuse: leave to remain and the DDVC

 

(1) The Secretary of State must, within 3 months of this Act being passed, lay a statement of changes in rules made under section 3(2) of the Immigration Act 1971 ("the immigration rules") to make provision for leave to remain to be granted to any person subject to immigration control who is a victim of domestic abuse in the United Kingdom.

 

(2) The statement laid under subsection (1) must set out rules for the granting of indefinite leave to remain to any person subject to immigration control who is a victim of domestic abuse in the United Kingdom; and the statement must provide for those rules to be commenced no later than one month of the laying of the statement.

 

(3) The Secretary of State must make provision for granting limited leave to remain for a period of no less than 6 months to any person eligible to make an application under the immigration rules for the purposes of subsection (2); and such leave shall include no condition under section 3(1)(c)(i), (ia), (ii) or (v) of the Immigration Act 1971.

 

(4) The Secretary of State must make provision for extending limited leave to remain granted in accordance with subsection (3) to ensure that leave continues throughout the period during which an application made under the immigration rules for the purposes of subsection (2) remains pending.

 

(5) Where subsection (6) applies, notwithstanding any statutory or other provision, no services shall be withheld from a victim of domestic abuse solely by reason of that person not having leave to remain or having leave to remain subject to a condition under section 3(1)(c) of the Immigration Act 1971.

 

(6) This subsection applies where a provider of services is satisfied that the victim of domestic abuse is eligible to make an application to which subsection (3) refers.

 

(7) The Secretary of State must, for the purposes of subsection (5), issue guidance to providers of services about the assessment of eligibility to make an application to which subsection (3) refers.    

 

(8) In this section – 

 

an application is pending during the period – 

(i)                    beginning when it is made, 

(ii)                  ending when it is finally decided, withdrawn or abandoned, and

an application is not finally decided while an application for review or appeal could be made within the period permitted for either or while any such review or appeal remains pending (meaning that review or appeal has not been finally decided, withdrawn or abandoned)

 

‘person subject to immigration control’ means a person in the United Kingdom who does not have the right of abode

 

‘provider of services’ includes both public and private bodies 

 

‘services’ includes accommodation, education, employment, financial assistance, healthcare and any service provided exclusively or particularly to survivors of domestic abuse 

 

Explanatory Note

Subsections (1) and (2) require the Secretary of State to make provision in the immigration rules for the granting of indefinite leave to remain to migrant survivors of domestic abuse. The required statement of changes in the rules must be laid within 3 months of the Act’s passing and to take effect within one month of the statement being laid. Subsection (3) requires the Secretary of State to grant limited leave to remain for 6 months (and without restrictions on employment, studies, residence or accessing public funds) to a survivor who is eligible to make an application for indefinite leave to remain. Subsection (4) requires the Secretary of State to make provision for extension of that limited leave throughout the time that an application for indefinite leave to remain is pending. Subsection (5) and (6) empower providers of accommodation, education, employment, financial assistance, healthcare and any services intended for survivors of domestic abuse to provide those services to a survivor who is eligible to make an application for indefinite leave to remain. Subsection (7) requires the Secretary of State to issue guidance to assist providers of services to exercise this power.

3) Amendment on a cross-departmental Strategic Plan on Migrant Women and Domestic Abuse:

To move the following Clause – 

Strategic plan relating to people subject to immigration control

(1) Before the end of the period of 9 months beginning with the day on which this Act is passed, the Secretaries of State with responsibility for or related to the relevant functions must jointly prepare and lay before Parliament a strategic plan.

(2) A strategic plan is a plan setting out how the Secretaries of State propose that the relevant functions will be exercised in the period to which the plan relates, which must be not less than three and not more than five years, for the purpose of protecting people subject to immigration control against domestic abuse ("the purpose").

(3) The Secretaries of State, must, before the end of the period to which a strategic plan relates ("the current period") jointly prepare and lay before Parliament:

(i) a strategic plan for a period immediately following the current period; or

(ii) an evaluation of the strategic plan for the current period with their assessment as to why no further strategic plan is necessary for the purpose.

(4) The Secretaries of State may at any time jointly prepare a revised strategic plan which shall be laid before Parliament as soon as reasonably practicable.

(5) The Secretaries of State shall, before laying a strategic plan or evaluation before Parliament in accordance with subsections (1) or (3), consult with the following persons –

(i) the Domestic Abuse Commissioner;

(ii) persons who have been victims of domestic abuse at a time when they were subject to immigration control;

(iii) specialist organisations working with victims of domestic abuse who are or have been subject to immigration control; and

(iv) such other persons, with experience or expertise relevant to the preparation or evaluation of the strategic plan, as the Secretaries of State think appropriate.

(6) For the purposes of this section –

"the relevant functions" means –

(a) immigration, asylum and nationality functions;

(b) functions for providing or securing provision of services for the purpose of section 1(1) of the National Health Service Act 2006;

(c) functions for providing benefits to which section 115 of the Immigration Act 1999 relates;

(d) functions of a local authority, within the meaning of the Children Act 1989, in providing for the housing, welfare or safeguarding of a child or adult;

(e) functions for the provision of legal aid as required by section 1(1) of the Legal Aid, Sentencing and Punishment of Offenders Act 2012;

(f) functions of a police authority established under section 3 of the Police Act 1996; and

(g) functions of the Crown Prosecution Service established under section 1 of the Prosecution of Offences Act 1985.

"people subject to immigration control" means being in the United Kingdom without having the right of abode

Explanatory Note

Subsection (1) requires a strategic plan to be laid before Parliament. The strategic plan must be laid within 9 months of enactment of the Domestic Abuse Bill.

The strategic plan must be cross-government having been prepared jointly by the Secretaries of State with responsibilities for the relevant functions listed in subsection (6) – essentially those functions relating to immigration, asylum and nationality; NHS services; welfare benefits provision; local authority housing, welfare and safeguarding services; legal aid; policing; and prosecution.

A strategic plan is defined in subsection (2). A plan must be for between 3 and 5 years; and must set out how the relevant functions will be exercised for the purpose of protecting migrant victims of domestic abuse. Subsection (3) requires that, at the end of a plan’s period, it must either be replaced with a new plan or an evaluation must be laid before Parliament with an assessment as to why no further plan is needed.

A strategic plan may be revised at any time – subsection (4).

Apart from a revised strategic plan, any plan or evaluation must be produced only after consultation with the Domestic Abuse Commissioner, migrant victims of domestic violence and, insofar as the government considers appropriate, others with relevant experience and expertise – subsection (5).

 

Prepared 11th June 2020