Monday, 15 June 2009

URGENT: Email the Director of SOAS to demand that he act to stop imminent deportation

Please send this email to the Director of SOAS at - please do so asap!

"Dear Professor Webley,

I was shocked and appalled to hear about the events that took place on the morning of Friday 12th June. The compliance of the University management in facilitating the arrest of 9 cleaners by immigration police demonstrates the unacceptable attitude of the University and their contractors (ISS) to the cleaners who work on campus. The University could have warned them of the coming raid, and refused access to the building. Instead, the University facilitated the intimidation of the cleaners by allowing forty immigration police to ambush them at work, in a University building. It then allowed the workers to be detained in a University room. One worker was forced to fly whilst 6 months pregnant, another was seriously ill. None of the detainees were allowed access to personal belongings, legal and trade union representation, and contact with their families and friends.

These workers have been active in campaigning for a London Living Wage. The use of immigration law to intimidate union activists is absolutely unacceptable.

I urge you to meet the demands of the occupiers who are bravely making a stand in support of the cleaners in a way that the University should have done in the first place. First and foremost, I urge you to immediately do everything in your power to secure the release of those detained and the return of those deported. Please contact the Home Office to stop the imminent deportation of 2 workers currently held at Dover: these people may be deported in the next 24 hours, and it is incredibly urgent that pressure is exerted to stop this.


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