Shadow Immigration Minister Damian Green MP has today announced ideas to tackle forced immigration (he wrote for The Observer earlier today):

  • That there should a prerequisite declaration of intention to marry abroad.
  • That there should be a time requirement before those who have been previously married to a spouse from overseas are allowed to bring in another spouse from overseas.
  • That potential spouses coming to the UK should take the ‘Life in the UK’ citizenship test.

Mr Green issued the following statement:

“The continuing existence of forced marriages in modern Britain is a stain on our social fabric. It is the extreme and unacceptable end of the clash of values between a plural democracy which values individual human rights and belief systems that regard women as second class citizens. Shockingly, forced marriages are not isolated events.

The Government’s Forced Marriage Unit does some good work but more effective action is needed. The Conservative Party has a number of proposals which we are putting out to consultation this week to minimise the incidence of forced marriage."

Action against forced marriage – as suggested by Louise Bagshawe – was one of the first policies to be approved as part of the process.

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