Hostile environment defeat

May 06, 2019

A key plank of Theresa May’s Hostile Environment immigration policy, the Right to Rent scheme, was declared unlawful in a ruling handed down by Mr Justice Spencer at the High Court in early March. He said:

It is my view that the Scheme introduced by the Government does not merely provide the occasion or opportunity for private landlords to discriminate but causes them to do so where otherwise they would not.

The Right to Rent scheme requires private landlords to check the immigration status of tenants and potential tenants and can result in them facing unlimited fines or even a prison sentence for renting to undocumented migrants.

Joint Council for the Welfare of Immigrants logo

The Joint Council for the Welfare of Immigrants, which took the Government to court, warned that these measures increase discrimination for people of colour, people with accents and people with foreign names who will be asked to prove their immigration status even if they’ve lived here their whole lives. 

The campaign group Global Justice Now have started a petition to end the hostile environment, which can be found here.