queer person showing a 'stop' on their hand

This week our government is quietly amending legislation so that people from India and Georgia will be unable to have asylum or human rights claims considered in the UK.

Instead, this government will try to immediately return them to those countries without a proper assessment of whether it is safe for them. But these countries are not safe for LGBTQI+ people. Their lives will be at risk if this change is made.

There is evidence of widespread human rights abuses against LGBTQI+ people in both countries. And as recently as last month, Noah, a gay man who fled persecution in Georgia was granted asylum here.

Noah was physically attacked by family members, forced to stay in a hospital for people with mental illnesses, and had an exorcism performed on him at church. His partner was attacked too, but the police in Georgia would not protect them.

You cannot live openly as a gay man in Georgia, or feel protected. If they hear that you are gay, they will kill you.

Noah, gay man from Georgia

Noah was extremely fearful of being returned to Georgia, he said his life would be in danger and he would rather take his own life than go back and face persecution.

Refusing to consider someone’s need for protection because of their nationality is dangerous. Everyone should have the right to seek safety here if they need it, no matter where they come from.

Imagine experiencing violence for being LGBTQI+ in your home country and fleeing to the UK hoping to find safety, only to be told that your country is deemed safe for everyone and you’ll be sent straight back. It’s utterly cruel.

Most of us would welcome LGBTQI+ people who can’t be themselves in other countries and are hoping to rebuild their lives in the UK. They should be welcomed and supported to live safely here, regardless of their country of origin.

If you agree with us, please ask your MP to speak up when this change is debated on 10 January.