One out of every four people stopped by immigration officers in Birmingham are British nationals, a new report has revealed. The data was obtained as part of a nationwide investigation by The Bristol Cable and The Bureau of Investigative Journalism . The Home Office only released the figures after a seven-month freedom of information battle.
That rate was significantly higher than the one-in-five average recorded for the 11 cities covered by the investigation. Britons also topped the list of nationalities stopped in Birmingham, ahead of Indians and Pakistanis, who each made up 20 percent of the total.
The figures released gave a breakdown of people questioned by nationality, No details regarding the ethnic background of those stopped was released.
Edgbaston Labour MP Preet Gill said the figures raised as many questions as answers and called for more transparency from the Home Office.
Gill said: “It concerns me that we are being given data that we cannot really understand. The very fact that the data does not have details of the ethnic background of those stopped — and the fact that it took so long for the Home Office to release the information — raises real concerns about racial profiling.”
Between January 2012 and January 2017, immigration officers stopped 1,966 Brits in Birmingham out of a total of 7,516 stopped in the city.
Birmingham came near the top of the list for the number of Britons stopped and questioned, behind London (8,002) and just behind Manchester (2,143).
A Home Office response to the figures said all operations were intelligence-led and respected anti-discrimination laws. But as well as Gill, other several campaigners have voiced concern that the figures released no details about the ethnic background of the people stopped by immigration officers.