Britain isn’t an especially friendly place to foreigners, We go through waves of inviting them into our country, and kicking them out again when they’re no longer useful.
Later this month, assuming Brexit actually happens, we’ll have fewer foreigners to worry about, when roughly half a billion Europeans will lose their right to live in the UK. Not that very many of them ever exercised that right.
But it’s not the Europeans that we, as a nation, are worried about. It’s the others. The ones who sneak in through the channel tunnel, or hide in the back of lorries on the cross channel ferry. Most non EU illegals, however, fly in through a major airport, and then simply disappear out of the sight, stealing our jobs, while simultaneously scrounging off our great British benefit system.
In most cases, it’s pretty easy for landlords to tell if a potential tenant is British. They’ll have a name like Dave or Sharon or Aurora. They’ll be white, or at least that shade of orange or walnut brown which comes from sunbed abuse.
Foreigners, however, have names like Amar, They wear turbans or other funny clothes, and you can tell just by looking at them that they’re up to no good.
Fortunately, the “right to rent” checks were introduced in 2016, and allowed, nay, demanded, that landlords ensure their tenants are in the country legally. The door is open for Dave and Sharon, but Shamima and Iqbal need to show their identification documents.
With the law change, landlords became criminally liable if their tenants turned out to be illegally in the UK, and they faced five years in the slammer if they failed to check.
But this common sense piece of legislation, part of the government’s “hostile environment” policy, looks set to be overturned.
The problem is that there are people in the UK with names such as Fabumi, Mohamed, or Adebowale. And much to everybody’s surprise, most of them are here legally. Some of them were even born here. We were shocked too. Despite their odd names and mysterious customs, they’re actually British!
Mr Justice Spencer said at the High Court that the rules had little effect on illegal immigration and were discriminatory, as, without a valid passport, would-be renters with an “ethnic name” were less successful in gaining a tenancy than the one with a white British name.
The scheme, “does not merely provide the occasion or opportunity for private landlords to discriminate but causes them to do so where otherwise they would not,” he said.
The right to rent scheme will not be rolled back immediately despite the high court ruling that it “breaches human rights laws,” but there will be a delay for further evaluation before it is extended to Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.
The Home Office said it was disappointed by the ruling.