The Secretary of State for the Home Department withdraws ‘Pushbacks Policy’


The Secretary of State for the Home Department has withdrawn her “pushbacks policy” – whereby she directed Border Force officials to physically ‘pushback’ small migrant boats attempting passage to the UK. 98% of those in such boats apply for asylum in the UK. The withdrawal comes just one week before a 3 day judicial review hearing. The pushbacks policy was challenged on multiple grounds, including vires that it was incompatible with the Refugee Convention and the common law, that it directed Border Force Officials to breach the Human Rights Act 1998, and irrationality.

Chris Buttler QC, James Robottom, and Katy Sheridan represented The Public Commercial and Services Union (who represent 80% of Border Force Officials) and Care 4 Calais, instructed by Duncan Lewis.

Chris Buttler QC and James Robottom also represented Channel Rescue, instructed by Reed Smith.

Raza Husain QC represented Freedom from Torture, instructed by Leigh Day.

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