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And I’m not making this up…


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Following on from last year’s seasonal leak, Free Movement can exclusively reveal a new secret Government proposal designed to cut down on abuse of human rights laws and reduce family immigration into the United Kingdom. The new proposal is said to have originated at the highest level because it was felt the existing family migration proposals were too soft.

A new scheme is to be introduced from April 2012 that will eliminate cases like that highlighted by Home Secretary Theresa May at the Conservative Party conference in September. Her keynote speech on immigration included the memorable condemnation of a human rights culture that permits foreign homosexual feline proprietors to remain in this generally butch, dog-loving island.

The scheme is to be called the Cat Registration Application Programme. It will operate in a similar way to the now defunct Certificate of Approval scheme for marriages, which was struck down by judges in 2008, several of whom are thought themselves to own  cats. Foreign nationals who wish to own a cat will need to register with the Home Office before making a cat purchase. Applications must generally be made in advance of ownership and will only be granted where a declaration is signed stating that the prospective owner has no human rights. Pre-existing cats are exempt from the scheme but if a cat or kitten is gifted or an existing cat gives birth then the new cat must be registered within ten days. If the no-rights declaration is not signed or an unregistered cat is reported on the new Cameron inspired cat-line then a UKBA cat-napping team will be notified and a dawn raid conducted.

In order to give claws to the programme a new civil penalty regime will be introduced simultaneously for pet shops. This will require them to check the immigration status of potential cat owners and retain copies of immigration papers. Defaulting pet shops will be named and shamed on a quarterly basis. This enforcement system is modelled on a similar regime for employers in the United Kingdom.

The Home Office declined to comment on the details of the leaked programme but cat-loving immigration solicitor Barry O’Leary was quoted as saying:

Oh good grief, not the cat again, please just stop it everyone, it’s really not funny any more.

Free Movement will now be away for Christmas and the blog may undergo some maintenance work over the festive period.

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The Free Movement blog was founded in 2007 by Colin Yeo, a barrister at Garden Court Chambers specialising in immigration law. The blog provides updates and commentary on immigration and asylum law by a variety of authors.


8 Responses

  1. Sources close to UKBA have vehemently denied any claims that the new regime discriminates against immigrants and that it is being introduced only in order to facilitate their removal. “Our aim is to protect British cats which are often taken in by immigrants who deny them the opportunity to find loving British owners. Just as with jobs, we believe that British cats should be for British people only”.

    Merry Christmas, FM! It seems 2011 will end well with yesterday’s judgement of ECJ on Dublin II. Let’s hope we hear more good news in 2012!

  2. For British-migrant couples the solution is for the Briton to be the legal owner. For others the solution is to have the cat on permanent loan. Or to rent it. Or to foster it. Or to import a cat whose ownership is therefore not subject to British juristdiction.

    Or to argue that dogs have four legs and as the cat also has four legs it must logically be a dog.

    Or get a really big cat and call it a lion or a tiger, thus being a feline but not strictly speaking a cat.

    (Genuine government programs to reduce human rights might not only be evil but just as illogical.)

    Good article FM and merry Christmas! :)

  3. Wow. This has really given me paws for thought, FM. Call me a p*ssy, but surely they must include a special claws dealing with OFMs? (Other Feline Mammals). I’d be lion if I said I wasn’t unsettled at the thought of the sheer scale of cat-astrophe this type legislation might wreak. It’s enough to have me reaching for the moggy-don.

    OK. Nuff awful puns already.

    Wishing you a Merry Christmas and a Peaceful New Year!

    (BTW – Any truth in the rumour that Theresa “Kitten-Heels” May really makes her shoes out of immigrants’ kittens…?)

  4. Well done for this. This really made my week. As already suggested a cat can be rented or owned by the settled migrant unless Theresa May includes all possible situations in which the immigrant must not own a cat. Have a happy new year FM

  5. A very amusing post thanxs for this freemovement and thanxs also for keeping us informed this year! Merry Xmas and a happy new year to you!

  6. Does this apply to big cats aswell?

    Or are we going to end up with immigrants applying for licences to keep pumas,leopards,lions to avoid deportation.

    So when is a cat not a cat!