• Beetz Magazine

Mad Rush MC’s Deportation Is Part of A Much Bigger Problem

Two days ago, Manchester’s music scene united in outrage at the government’s questionable decision to deport Mad Rush MC, a prominent figure within the UK drum and bass scene and active community youth worker. Along with 50 others, on February 6th Mad Rush (Aka Owen Haisley) will be deported back to Jamaica, from where he migrated to the UK at the age of four – legally.

The devastating news ignited support from across the music industry, with the likes of Chase & Status and Sacha Lord (Night tsar of Manchester and owner/operator of WHP and Parklife) being among the many sharing their dismay at the situation.

At the time of writing, Owen’s petition (entitled ‘Release Owen Haisley and the 50+ passengers being deported on Wednesday 6th Feb!’) has reached 89,852 signatures of its 150,000 goal; a promising achievement that, along with the high-profile support of figures such as the mayor of Greater Manchester (who has stated he will write to the home secretary about Haisley’s case), has the potential to benefit the MC’s saddening circumstance.

But the question raises of what will become of the other, nameless passengers? And what became of the 83 immigrants that the government admitted to having deported in August?

With the government having changed the way it calculates its total deportee figures (meaning that people deported after being convicted of a crime are no longer counted) had Haisley not been the prominent drum and bass figure that he is, his fate may have remained silent and un-traceable.

While Haisley is without doubt an asset to the UK and a highly valued member of society, does the anonymous 23-year-old from Wolverhampton (quoted in an interview with the Independent as saying: “I’m in shock at the moment. I’m scared. I don’t know anyone in Jamaica. Who will I stay with? How will I get income?”) deserve any more so the unjust circumstances that he and so many others have found themselves in?

While it is both important and inspiring to acknowledge the way communities have united in their support of Owen Haisley’s case - it is even more important to keep the knowledge of unjust goings-on in our consciousness and remain just as active, if not more so, in publicising the cases of those affected now and in the future by inhumane treatment at the hands of the UK government.

Sign the petition to prevent the deportation of Owen and 50+ others here.

Follow the author on Twitter @HannahMWalford