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The story of how British citizenship developed and why this matters for questions of race, migration and belonging in 'Global Britain'

Hosted and produced by Michaela Benson.

Cover Art: George Kalivis

Production and post-production: Art of Podcast 

Feb 15, 2024

What are the UK Government’s ‘safe and legal routes’? How do these relate to ‘stop the boats’, the Rwanda Plan, and the curtailment of asylum as laid out in the 1951 Refugee Convention? What can we learn from listening to the Hong Kongers and Ukrainians beneficiaries of these humanitarian visas? And what if these routes are not so safe after all?   

In this episode we explore the UK’s safe and legal (humanitarian routes). Elena Zambelli explains what ‘asylum’ is, looking its history, scope and challenges to these international protections since 2015 ‘refugee crisis.’ Fizza Qureshi, CEO of the Migrants’ Rights Network, board member of Migrants at Work and of the honorary advisory committee for the Black Europeans, joins us to offer a critical overview of the UK’s immigration and asylum reforms over the past decade. Asking what this tells us about migrants’ rights, she highlights how these reforms impact disproportionately on brown and black migrants who try to make the UK their homes. And co-hosts Nando Sigona and Michaela Benson consider the ongoing contestations surrounding the figure of the ‘refugee’ as well as the asylum system as a whole. They reflect on how beneficiaries of the Hong Kong BN(O) and Ukraine visa schemes experience these humanitarian visas, and what we can learn from them about the limits of these.  

You can access the full transcripts for the episode, further resources and active listening questions over on our website: Who do we think we are?