This post is being updated with reports of atrocities around the army camp accommodation and hotels, and other Home Office plans to accommodate people in new sites such as Haasockfield/Derwent, and Rwanda:
The European Court of Human Rights block on sending asylum seekers to Rwanda could be overturned by ministers under new proposals.
The plan, being introduced to Parliament, would allow ministers to ignore the court’s injunctions.
It is an addition to planned changes to the Human Rights Act, and could also affect future cases involving migrants.
Critics say the proposals are confusing and would create two tiers of rights that hand more power to ministers.
Continue reading “Concerns about the use of army barracks, hotels, offshoring etc etc.”
From Barbara Forbes QARN-CRN representative: You might be interested in this latest bulletin from Churches Refugee Network. I represent QARN on CRN and am also on the advisory group. David and I both contributed items for this edition of the bulletin
UK’S UNGODLY ACTION
The UK’s forcible transportation to Rwanda of asylum seekers declared “inadmissible” because they have entered without a visa has rightly been deemed “ungodly” by Justin Welby. It is a basic infringement of the Golden rule of love of God and love of neighbour. Today, we often prefer other less theological language notably “concern”, “care”, “protection from harm” language which has become enshrined in the general notion of “human rights”. Nevertheless examples from Jesus’s parables such as the neighbourliness of the Good Samaritan, the father’s unconditional love and care for his Prodigal Son survive in the public consciousness.
Continue reading “Rwanda: “A serpent in place of a piece of fish””
New Inspections scheduled for 2021-22 include:
- ‘An inspection of Border Force assurance’
- ‘An inspection of Intelligence’
- ‘An inspection of a small airport’
- ‘An inspection of a small seaport’
- ‘An inspection of the removal of Foreign National Offenders (FNOs)’
Published 23 July 2021
ICIBI Inspection Plan 2021-22
Continue reading “Independent Chief Inspector of Borders and Immigration – David Neal”
a. Completed inspections – reports awaiting publication:
‘An inspection of ePassport gates (June 2020-January 2021)’. Submitted 17
‘Second annual inspection of “Adults at Risk in immigration detention” (July
2020-March 2021)’. Submitted 30 June 2021
‘A further inspection of the EU Settlement Scheme (3) (July 2020-March
2021)’. Submitted 15 July 2021
‘An inspection of asylum casework (August 2020-April 2021)’. Submitted 23
Updated 23 July 2021: An inspection of contingency asylum accommodation:
HMIP report on Penally Camp and Napier Barracks (November 2020 – March 2021)
The inspectors conducted visits to both sites, Penally Camp on 16 and 17 February and Napier Barracks on 17 and 18 February. The ICIBI also returned for a further visit to Napier Barracks on 4 March.
On 8 March 2021 the then Chief Inspector, David Bolt, published interim high-level findings. This report is the fuller final report that was sent to the Home Office. It reflects the department’s factual accuracy checks, and includes forewords from David Bolt, the previous Chief Inspector, and David Neal, the current Chief Inspector.
There is also a copy of a letter sent in March from David Bolt to the Director General of Asylum and Protection.
This link contains
- a foreword from the new ICIBI Dave Neal
- letter from the previous ICIBI David Bolt to the Home Office, dated 21 March 2021
- and the report from the Inspector of Prisons
- The Home Office’s response to the report
Summary of findings for Napier Barracks and Penally Camp
Continue reading “ICIBI inspection of the use of hotels and barracks as contingency asylum accommodation”
Leadership and management
S1 Penally Camp and Napier Barracks were opened as contingency asylum accommodation in September 2020. The Home Office contracted Clearsprings Ready Homes (CRH) to manage the accommodation. CRH sub-contracted to other companies to provide services, and they in turn sub-contracted to other providers. Managers at both sites lacked the experience and skills to run large-scale communal accommodation.
3 June 2021: Care4Calais: · **Breaking news**The high court found today:
– Napier Barracks was inadequate accommodation for asylum seekers, placing them at risk of a fire and contracting COVID-19
– The Government’s process for selecting people to be accommodated at the Barracks was flawed and unlawful
– Residents of Napier Barracks were unlawfully detained under purported Covid rules
However over 265 asylum seekers remain accommodated at Napier barracks today and the Government intends to increase numbers up to 337. Already, since being refilled, over 45 people have been transferred out of the Barracks on the grounds of vulnerability following the legal work, indicating that there is still no adequate screening process in place.
We are delighted with this judgement, which follows long months of the Government ignoring a mountain of evidence and complaints that the Barracks are not only unsuitable, but highly damaging, to vulnerable people entrusted to their care. It is disappointing that evidence provided by NGOs and regulators was ignored for so long and it has taken legal action to reach this verdict. However today Napier barracks remains in use and our goal must be to get those inside moved to suitable accommodation as soon as possible. Penally was closed and Napier should be too.
Continue reading “High Court rules Home Secretary acted unlawfully in accommodating asylum seekers in inadequate Napier barracks”
28 April 2021: Home Office to resume evicting some asylum seekers with immediate effect.
23 April 2021: The Home Office writes:
We will be sharing details of the current number of cases for review with local authorities to assist them in planning. However I would like to emphasise that it is not possible at this stage to be definitive about the final volume of cases that will have their support discontinued. This is partly because all individuals will continue to receive a minimum of 21 calendar days notice from the decision to stop their support and have the opportunity to remain in their accommodation, supported under section 4(2) of the 1999 Act, provided that they agree to take reasonable steps to leave the UK (in practical terms by registering with the Home Office’s voluntary returns programme and leaving when a flight can be arranged for them)
Continue reading “Support for people seeking asylum”
MPs from the All-Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) on Immigration Detention have today published their report from a visit in February to Napier Barracks – a former military base near Folkestone where people seeking asylum are being placed by the government in detention-like conditions.
** Access the full visit report here **
An inquiry undertaken last year by the APPG found that being accommodated at Napier left many people seeking asylum feeling dehumanised and suffering a profound deterioration in their mental health, in some cases to the point of attempting suicide.
The MPs visiting in February found that little had changed at the site and said they remain “deeply concerned” for the individuals accommodated there, calling for Napier to be closed with “immediate and permanent effect”.
A ruling by the High Court in June 2021 found that Napier Barracks did not meet minimum standards for asylum accommodation. The parliamentarians’ report warns that changes introduced by the Home Office after the ruling have failed to address the fundamental problems at the site, with serious concerns continuing in relation to:
Continue reading “APPG Inquiry: quasi detention in camps”
21 January 2021: Someone new to Qarn has written to ask: I am new to Qarn and find the wealth of info quite daunting . Please can you tell me more about the new asylum seekers accomodation centre. Where can I find a summary of some of the initiatives etc and current state/numbers of asylum seekers in uk , many thanks.
The following long read may be helpful. I know that others in the QARN group also have information. This is just one aspect of the concerns shared by QARN members – there is a lot to be concerned about and we can’t all do everything, but if we each do what we can maybe we can find a way to change the system.
To answer, it is maybe worth saying that there is a lot of traffic on QARN, but feel free to only pick up the emails that interest you. I don’t keep up with everything myself, and I have been involved since 2007.
I suggest that QARN is the same as other Quaker situations, where you should feel able to let some things pass if they don’t speak to you. There is a lot of history – some of us have been around for a long time, and others are fairly new to it, so feel free to ask questions, and please try not to feel daunted.
To begin to unpick the questions: first I’ll run through how the system works, then explain why this is all suddenly of great concern.
Continue reading “Summary of the camp_hotels situation”