Over 300 people staged a rally in Wigan, north west England, last Saturday to protest against the deportation of Sarah Hata and her family. The family were depoted to Uganda last week.
Trade unionists and local school children who have written to Tony Blair about the deportation joined the rally. The turnout in a mainly white town like Wigan showed how ordinary people have come together over this issue.
Bill Burrows, a local councillor for the Community Action Party and family spokesperson, said the campaign wanted a judicial review of the case.
The family were taken to Yarl’s Wood detention centre in October. They were put on a plane last week even after a doctor said they weren’t fit for travel. There were also representatives from Bolton National Union of Teachers and anti-deportation campaigns at the rally.
Twenty five people occupied Brand Street immigration office in Glasgow for the day on Wednesday of last week in protest at the deportation of asylum seekers. Among the protesters chaining themselves into the office were Scottish Socialist Pary MSP Tommy Sheridan, SNP MSP Sandra White, Paddy Hill from the Birmingham Six and actor Peter Mullan.
The occupation was part of an ongoing campaign in Glasgow against deportations and against snatch squads that are arresting families, including children, in dawn raids.
The recent deportation of the Vucaj family after such a raid has provoked huge protest meetings.
The home office agreed to a meeting with Tommy Sheridan, Sandra White and others to discuss the protesters’ concerns.
Tommy said, “People seeking asylum are forced to report every week like criminals, and every week they don’t know if they are going to be allowed home or taken away in a van to a detention centre.
“It is inhumane for any family to have to live this way.”
Over 200 local people and refugees also met in the Gorbals area of Glasgow to demand an end to forced deportations