We are appalled at Jill Mortimer MP’s recent comments at PMQs, in which she demonised asylum seekers as “illegal”, claimed her office was being “besieged” by young men, and then called for asylum seekers to be “expelled”.
This language is a direct result of the normalisation of dehumanising racist and anti-migrant narratives across our society. Her comments also draw on the war-like language of ‘besieged’, which stokes fear and panic, creates the impression that we are somehow under attack, and attempts to justify increasingly harsh immigration legislation.
There is a common misconception that racialised men are not worthy of support or safety. We have unfortunately seen the impact of this kind of rhetoric on the men in our Network. Men are subject to persecution based on their identity or political beliefs. Men do also flee famine, war, genocide, and other crises.
Jill Mortimer’s comments show the real life implications of hateful rhetoric on people’s lives. The State, and wider society, see marginalised groups as inherently undeserving of rights. We must push back against this dehumanisation, and continue to defy the narrative.
Make your Words Matter pledge and say ‘no’ to hate against migrants, including refugees.