MPs are reporting their own constituents to immigration enforcement using a new Home Office hotline and webpage.
A Freedom of Information request submitted by Politics.co.uk has revealed that the Home Office has received 482 tip-offs from MPs between 2014 and 2016, raising the possibility that MPs are reporting their own constituents to the authorities when they have come to them for help.
The news comes after London mayor Sadiq Khan said police officers were “duty bound” to report both victims and witnesses of crime to the Home Office for immigration enforcement.
According to the Joint Council for the Welfare of Immigrants, the findings are “extremely concerning”.
“All constituents have a right to petition their MPs and should have confidence that they will not betray their interests,” the legal and policy director Chai Patel said.
“It is extremely concerning that members of parliament appear to be sharing information with the Home Office in these circumstances. With massive cuts to legal aid many migrants have nowhere else to turn to find someone who can advise them and represent their interests.
“We need to get to the bottom of what information MPs are giving the Home Office and in what context.”
Fizza Qureshi, director of the Migrants’ Rights Network, said: “If parliamentarians are reporting their constituents, it demonstrates how deep the ‘hostile environment’ is seeping into our society.
“You would hope that MPs would advocate on behalf of their constituents rather than report them to the Home Office.”