Discriminatory immigration rules to be changed

“Discriminatory” rules that require children to show “good character” when applying for British citizenship will be changed.

The draft British Nationality Act 1981 remedial order sets out changes to immigration rules.

Under the 1981 Act, children aged 10 or older may not be granted unless British citizenship unless the Secretary of State is satisfied that he or she is of good character.

Speaking in the Commons, Immigration minister Caroline Nokes said,

“In this day and age I think we can all agree that the law should not discriminate against people simply because their parents were not married when they were born, or that we should discriminate against people just because it was their mother who was British and not their father.”

She added that the remedial order “seeks to remove discriminatory provisions” in the 1981 Act, saying, “This means that once the law is changed, those seeking to register as British citizens who were born to an unmarried British father before July 2006 or to a British mother before 1983 no longer need to demonstrate that they are of good character where it would be discriminatory to ask them to do so.”

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