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Travel to Philippines


Travel to Philippines

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TryAgain
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Hi all, I was wondering if it is possible to travel to the Philippines whilst being a RSO. Has anyone any experience of doing this? I’m medium risk as far as I’m aware, and was recently told it’s impossible for me to be down graded anytime soon. I’m hoping to travel there to get married to my long term partner (who is from there). Are green notices issued to all RSO’s wanting to travel in all situations or as I’ve been reading recently only if the police have concern about you travelling and committing an offence abroad? And is it any use applying for a visa from the Philippine embassy for the trip?

Thanks in advance for any help/advice.
AB2014
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TryAgain - 11 May 22 7:06 PM
Hi all, I was wondering if it is possible to travel to the Philippines whilst being a RSO. Has anyone any experience of doing this? I’m medium risk as far as I’m aware, and was recently told it’s impossible for me to be down graded anytime soon. I’m hoping to travel there to get married to my long term partner (who is from there). Are green notices issued to all RSO’s wanting to travel in all situations or as I’ve been reading recently only if the police have concern about you travelling and committing an offence abroad? And is it any use applying for a visa from the Philippine embassy for the trip? Thanks in advance for any help/advice.

There was a guy who posted on here a while ago. The police issued an Interpol notice and he was turned back on arrival in the Philippines. That wasn't necessarily about him, as if they do a risk assessment, they take the destination country into account. You could try applying for a visa, but they could very well say no and then they would know about your record and you would effectively be banned forever. However, if you wait and then apply after you come off the SOR, the police would have no involvement and it would be up to you what you do.

=========================================================================================================

Robert Lightfoot, former head of NASA, said it succinctly in his parting speech in April 2018: Protecting against risk and being safe are not the same thing ... [W]e must move from risk management to risk leadership. From a risk management perspective, the safest place to be is on the ground. From a risk leadership perspective, I believe thats the worst place [we] can be.

TryAgain
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Thanks for the reply. Ideally I would wait yes, but I can’t wait 8 more years to see my partners’ family etc, and it would mean so much to all involved if I were to be able to have a ceremony there, so was wondering if it is possible if it’s for a genuine reason to go there, and obviously be able to prove I’m not traveling there alone for some sort of sordid vacation. I don’t know if you get the opportunity to explain your reasons for going abroad/who you will be with/contact details of said person etc, if that were to be taken into account before just assuming everyone going there needs a green notice placed on them to prevent them reaching their destination.
AB2014
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TryAgain - 12 May 22 10:35 PM
Thanks for the reply. Ideally I would wait yes, but I can’t wait 8 more years to see my partners’ family etc, and it would mean so much to all involved if I were to be able to have a ceremony there, so was wondering if it is possible if it’s for a genuine reason to go there, and obviously be able to prove I’m not traveling there alone for some sort of sordid vacation. I don’t know if you get the opportunity to explain your reasons for going abroad/who you will be with/contact details of said person etc, if that were to be taken into account before just assuming everyone going there needs a green notice placed on them to prevent them reaching their destination.

I'm sure most of on here are sympathetic to your case. I don't think I can say the same for the Philippines immigration authorities, though. Another forum user said he was very badly treated because of a green notice, so it's all about whether you can convince the police not to issue one. It has been alleged that some forces issue one as a matter of policy for certain destinations, and once that notice has been issued, if you are turned away, that will remain on your record there so once you have been turned away, you are unlikely to get in at a later date. So, it would depend partly on how well you get on with your local police, but even then the decision is likely to be made higher up. They will take the input of your local police into account, but the people you deal with might well have no idea whether a green notice will be issued.

=========================================================================================================

Robert Lightfoot, former head of NASA, said it succinctly in his parting speech in April 2018: Protecting against risk and being safe are not the same thing ... [W]e must move from risk management to risk leadership. From a risk management perspective, the safest place to be is on the ground. From a risk leadership perspective, I believe thats the worst place [we] can be.

punter99
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Green notices are not issued automatically for medium risk people, but the process involves 3 different police officers. There is the PPU, the International Liaison Officer (ILO) and the National Crime Agency (NCA), who will all be part of the decision making process.

The NCA are the ones with access to the Interpol system, so they actually do the issuing of the green notice and recording it on the computer. They are supposed to take into account any information passed to them by the ILO, who are located within each police force. Each force has its own 'international team' who deal with these matters and they act as the go-betweens, sending information gathered by the PPU, to the NCA.

So you really need to convince all 3 of these police officers, that you have a genuine reason for wanting to go to the Philippines. Start by talking to your PPU. They may tell you that they have no access to the Interpol computer, which is true, or that they are not the ones who make the decision to issue a green notice, which is only partly true. They are still involved in the process. They should be able to pick up the phone and speak to their ILO, to explain your reasons for wanting to go there. The ILO will then speak to the NCA and discuss it with them. 

It may come down to how good you are at convincing the PPU, that you are telling the truth. If you can convince the PPU that you are sincere, I would hope that the PPU would put in a good word for you, with the ILO. Then the ILO would need to convince the NCA that a green notice is not necessary. 

There is no guarantee of success, because they may decide that a green notice is still required, just because Philippines is a high risk country. But I would expect them to communicate their decision to you, so that you don't have to risk going out there without knowing if a green notice is in place. Again, if the PPU say that they do not know if a green notice has been issued or not, then they should still be able to find out, just by asking the international team.


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Last Month by punter99
david123
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Sorry but you have no chance of going to the Philippines if you are on the SOR. The NCA have a blankets policy of issuing green notices for any one on the SOR going to SE Asia. I was refused entry to Thailand and put on the next flight back even though I am at low risk. My offender manager said it was nothing to do with him just NCA policy
punter99
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david123 - 17 May 22 4:04 PM
Sorry but you have no chance of going to the Philippines if you are on the SOR. The NCA have a blankets policy of issuing green notices for any one on the SOR going to SE Asia. I was refused entry to Thailand and put on the next flight back even though I am at low risk. My offender manager said it was nothing to do with him just NCA policy

What you say makes perfect sense, although it goes against the advice from the College of Policing, that low and medium risk offenders be assessed on an individual basis. A blanket policy would not take into account the different reasons people might have for going to all those countries, e.g. family ties.

It would probably be a good one, for a freedom of information request to the NCA. Do they have a blanket policy or not?

Coming back to the situation where you were refused entry. Did you have a conversation with your offender manager before going out there? We know that we have to notify the police of any foreign travel beforehand, but whether the PPU are informed at the same time or not, isn't clear. The official guidance implies that the NCA must consult the PPU, when deciding whether to issue a green notice or not. At the very least, you would think they might mention to the PPU that somebody they were managing, was going out of the country.

Once the PPU knows that you are going to Thailand, they really ought to tell you, if they have a problem with you doing that. But anecdotal evidence suggests that they wash their hands of the whole business and just say "it's not my decision". That deprives the offender of any opportunity to explain their reasons for going to a particular country. So without any knowledge of why the offender is going to Thailand, it's not surprising that the NCA assumes the worst and issues a green notice.

The whole process needs to be more transparent, so that people are not kept in the dark about what will happen to them, when they travel abroad. If the PPU, the NCA and the international teams communicated with one another, these situations could be avoided.

 
AB2014
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punter99 - 18 May 22 2:28 PM
david123 - 17 May 22 4:04 PM
Sorry but you have no chance of going to the Philippines if you are on the SOR. The NCA have a blankets policy of issuing green notices for any one on the SOR going to SE Asia. I was refused entry to Thailand and put on the next flight back even though I am at low risk. My offender manager said it was nothing to do with him just NCA policy

What you say makes perfect sense, although it goes against the advice from the College of Policing, that low and medium risk offenders be assessed on an individual basis. A blanket policy would not take into account the different reasons people might have for going to all those countries, e.g. family ties.

It would probably be a good one, for a freedom of information request to the NCA. Do they have a blanket policy or not?

Coming back to the situation where you were refused entry. Did you have a conversation with your offender manager before going out there? We know that we have to notify the police of any foreign travel beforehand, but whether the PPU are informed at the same time or not, isn't clear. The official guidance implies that the NCA must consult the PPU, when deciding whether to issue a green notice or not. At the very least, you would think they might mention to the PPU that somebody they were managing, was going out of the country.

Once the PPU knows that you are going to Thailand, they really ought to tell you, if they have a problem with you doing that. But anecdotal evidence suggests that they wash their hands of the whole business and just say "it's not my decision". That deprives the offender of any opportunity to explain their reasons for going to a particular country. So without any knowledge of why the offender is going to Thailand, it's not surprising that the NCA assumes the worst and issues a green notice.

The whole process needs to be more transparent, so that people are not kept in the dark about what will happen to them, when they travel abroad. If the PPU, the NCA and the international teams communicated with one another, these situations could be avoided.

 

For me, it's that last paragraph which is the most relevant to the overall situation. It may well be that a PPU officer who asked about the policy was effectively told to mind their own business, because it's above their pay grade. You'd think there would be liaison, but it's probably more about the infamous "need to know" basis, and the higher levels jealously protect their bit of power and information by only communicating upwards, not downwards. Sure, there must be PPU officers who just don't care about anything beyond their job, but some of that might be because they used to be interested but were told to keep their nose out of issues that were not in their job description.

Also relevant, though, is that the College of Policing advice is just that - advice. I'm sure that there are forces or individual officers who prefer to do it their way rather than following advice and taking responsibility. It's in the nature of being risk-averse, without actually assessing the risk.

=========================================================================================================

Robert Lightfoot, former head of NASA, said it succinctly in his parting speech in April 2018: Protecting against risk and being safe are not the same thing ... [W]e must move from risk management to risk leadership. From a risk management perspective, the safest place to be is on the ground. From a risk leadership perspective, I believe thats the worst place [we] can be.

punter99
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AB2014 - 18 May 22 2:36 PM
punter99 - 18 May 22 2:28 PM
david123 - 17 May 22 4:04 PM
Sorry but you have no chance of going to the Philippines if you are on the SOR. The NCA have a blankets policy of issuing green notices for any one on the SOR going to SE Asia. I was refused entry to Thailand and put on the next flight back even though I am at low risk. My offender manager said it was nothing to do with him just NCA policy

What you say makes perfect sense, although it goes against the advice from the College of Policing, that low and medium risk offenders be assessed on an individual basis. A blanket policy would not take into account the different reasons people might have for going to all those countries, e.g. family ties.

It would probably be a good one, for a freedom of information request to the NCA. Do they have a blanket policy or not?

Coming back to the situation where you were refused entry. Did you have a conversation with your offender manager before going out there? We know that we have to notify the police of any foreign travel beforehand, but whether the PPU are informed at the same time or not, isn't clear. The official guidance implies that the NCA must consult the PPU, when deciding whether to issue a green notice or not. At the very least, you would think they might mention to the PPU that somebody they were managing, was going out of the country.

Once the PPU knows that you are going to Thailand, they really ought to tell you, if they have a problem with you doing that. But anecdotal evidence suggests that they wash their hands of the whole business and just say "it's not my decision". That deprives the offender of any opportunity to explain their reasons for going to a particular country. So without any knowledge of why the offender is going to Thailand, it's not surprising that the NCA assumes the worst and issues a green notice.

The whole process needs to be more transparent, so that people are not kept in the dark about what will happen to them, when they travel abroad. If the PPU, the NCA and the international teams communicated with one another, these situations could be avoided.

 

For me, it's that last paragraph which is the most relevant to the overall situation. It may well be that a PPU officer who asked about the policy was effectively told to mind their own business, because it's above their pay grade. You'd think there would be liaison, but it's probably more about the infamous "need to know" basis, and the higher levels jealously protect their bit of power and information by only communicating upwards, not downwards. Sure, there must be PPU officers who just don't care about anything beyond their job, but some of that might be because they used to be interested but were told to keep their nose out of issues that were not in their job description.

Also relevant, though, is that the College of Policing advice is just that - advice. I'm sure that there are forces or individual officers who prefer to do it their way rather than following advice and taking responsibility. It's in the nature of being risk-averse, without actually assessing the risk.

To be fair, we don't know enough about the sequence of events, to draw those conclusions. But one thing is clear. The person would not fly to Thailand, believing that they were going to be refused entry. So did nobody in the police ever say to them; "You're going to Thailand and that's a high risk country, so why are going there?"  I would expect the police to be a little bit curious, not to say suspicious.
AB2014
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punter99 - 18 May 22 2:56 PM
AB2014 - 18 May 22 2:36 PM
punter99 - 18 May 22 2:28 PM
david123 - 17 May 22 4:04 PM
Sorry but you have no chance of going to the Philippines if you are on the SOR. The NCA have a blankets policy of issuing green notices for any one on the SOR going to SE Asia. I was refused entry to Thailand and put on the next flight back even though I am at low risk. My offender manager said it was nothing to do with him just NCA policy

What you say makes perfect sense, although it goes against the advice from the College of Policing, that low and medium risk offenders be assessed on an individual basis. A blanket policy would not take into account the different reasons people might have for going to all those countries, e.g. family ties.

It would probably be a good one, for a freedom of information request to the NCA. Do they have a blanket policy or not?

Coming back to the situation where you were refused entry. Did you have a conversation with your offender manager before going out there? We know that we have to notify the police of any foreign travel beforehand, but whether the PPU are informed at the same time or not, isn't clear. The official guidance implies that the NCA must consult the PPU, when deciding whether to issue a green notice or not. At the very least, you would think they might mention to the PPU that somebody they were managing, was going out of the country.

Once the PPU knows that you are going to Thailand, they really ought to tell you, if they have a problem with you doing that. But anecdotal evidence suggests that they wash their hands of the whole business and just say "it's not my decision". That deprives the offender of any opportunity to explain their reasons for going to a particular country. So without any knowledge of why the offender is going to Thailand, it's not surprising that the NCA assumes the worst and issues a green notice.

The whole process needs to be more transparent, so that people are not kept in the dark about what will happen to them, when they travel abroad. If the PPU, the NCA and the international teams communicated with one another, these situations could be avoided.

 

For me, it's that last paragraph which is the most relevant to the overall situation. It may well be that a PPU officer who asked about the policy was effectively told to mind their own business, because it's above their pay grade. You'd think there would be liaison, but it's probably more about the infamous "need to know" basis, and the higher levels jealously protect their bit of power and information by only communicating upwards, not downwards. Sure, there must be PPU officers who just don't care about anything beyond their job, but some of that might be because they used to be interested but were told to keep their nose out of issues that were not in their job description.

Also relevant, though, is that the College of Policing advice is just that - advice. I'm sure that there are forces or individual officers who prefer to do it their way rather than following advice and taking responsibility. It's in the nature of being risk-averse, without actually assessing the risk.

To be fair, we don't know enough about the sequence of events, to draw those conclusions. But one thing is clear. The person would not fly to Thailand, believing that they were going to be refused entry. So did nobody in the police ever say to them; "You're going to Thailand and that's a high risk country, so why are going there?"  I would expect the police to be a little bit curious, not to say suspicious.

Well, I think most regular readers of the forum know or suspect how cynical I am. What you say is exactly how things should be done. However, that doesn't appear to be how things are actually done. The people who make the decisions have no regard for the people directly affected by their decisions, rather like politicians. Yes, there should be feedback, to prevent distress, humiliation and needless expenditure, but how often does it happen? I don't know, and I'm guessing many people on the wrong end of this process keep quiet about it, and I'm guessing people who are told keep quiet as well. There may well be PPU officers who know, or at least strongly suspect, what the final decision will be, but they don't say anything. Others may simply not know, perhaps because they're not interested, didn't think they need to find out or say something, or had asked previously and been told to mind their own business. Of course, the person in question might have been asked by PPU when they either discussed or notified their travel plans, and that should have been included in the report from PPU to be passed up the food chain. It still looks like nothing came back the other way, and they might have assumed (naively? innocently?) that if they don't hear that there's a problem, then there isn't a problem. 

=========================================================================================================

Robert Lightfoot, former head of NASA, said it succinctly in his parting speech in April 2018: Protecting against risk and being safe are not the same thing ... [W]e must move from risk management to risk leadership. From a risk management perspective, the safest place to be is on the ground. From a risk leadership perspective, I believe thats the worst place [we] can be.

GO


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