Free Movement, 14 January 2011
The routine detention of immigrant children by the last Government was a disgrace. Claimed changes to detention policy by the current incumbents and the recent case of R (on the application of Suppiah) v Secretary of State for the Home Department  EWHC 2 (Admin) (11 January 2011) reveal just how disgraceful practice used to be. This also turns out to be something for which officials as much as politicians are responsible. Continue reading “Detention of children”
11 Oct 2010 : Column 323
Monday, 11 October 2010, 2.44 pm
Asked By Lord Roberts of Llandudno
To ask Her Majesty’s Government when they will end child detention in immigration cases.
The Minister of State, Home Office (Baroness Neville-Jones): My Lords, I am unable to provide a date for the ending of detention of children for immigration purposes but we remain determined to end this practice as soon as possible. Working with NGOs, we are designing and testing alternative arrangements to protect children’s welfare while ensuring the return of families who have no right to be here. We are making significant progress. Continue reading “House of Lords_Immigration: Detention of Children”
BEDFORDSHIRE LOCAL SAFEGUARDING CHILDREN BOARD
Publishes highly critical report today 14 JUNE 2010
Bedford LSCB 090610unprotected(2)
6.1 The review made detailed recommendations to all the participating agencies and to the Bedford Borough Council Local Safeguarding Children Board that have been accepted and each agency has produced an improvement plan to respond to the review. The high-level recommendations are below and form the basis for a multi-agency action plan, which is being monitored by all the LSCB partner agencies. Continue reading “BEDFORDSHIRE LOCAL SAFEGUARDING CHILDREN BOARD Publishes highly critical report”
Scottish Parliament, 27 May 2010 – Children in Dungavel, and dawn raids
QUESTION: Linda Fabiani (Scottish National Party)
To ask the Scottish Executive whether it has sought clarification from the UK Government that the pledge in its coalition agreement to end detention of children in Dungavel Immigration Removal Centre will be extended to ensure the ending of dawn raids in Scotland. Continue reading “Questions in Scottish Parliament”
Our friends at SOAS Detainee Support are hosting the Release Carnival in London’s Torrington Square on Saturday 5th June from 12 noon, calling on the government to stop detaining families now.
When the new government said it would ‘end the detention of children for immigration purposes’ some people proclaimed victory.
But as the families locked up in Yarl’s Wood reminded everyone in a letter to Nick Clegg (published in last Sunday’s Observer), ‘we are still here in the detention centre’. Continue reading “Let’s end child detention at the Release Carnival,”
Sir Al Aynsley-Green, the paediatrician who, as the first Children’s Commissioner for England, did more than any single person to expose the arrest and detention of innocent children, the injustices and sheer horror of their lived experiences, said:
‘ I am looking for two things: A demonstration of intent by releasing those currently held, not least because absconding is not an issue. Within weeks rather than months produce robust proposals. Detention is inhumane and shocking and there is no place for it in a country that claims to be civilised.’
Sir AL QUOTE IN FULL:
Sir Al Aynsley-Green, the first Children’s Commissioner for England:
‘I welcome the focus on detention so soon in the new government. It must have a chance to produce an action plan. But the review should not be an excuse for prevarication. The evidence of harm to children is incontrovertible. And officials have had at least five years to think of alternatives during the pressure that I have applied as Children’s Commissioner. I am looking for two things: A demonstration of intent by releasing those currently held, not least because absconding is not an issue. Within weeks rather than months produce robust proposals. Detention is inhumane and shocking and there is no place for it in a country that claims to be civilised.’ Continue reading “ECDN campaigns for immediate release of children in detention”
At Serco’s annual meeting in London’s Queen Elizabeth Hall this morning Dr Frank Arnold, torture scars expert and Serco shareholder asked the following question:
‘Serco is expanding its activities in Healthcare to include NHS hospital management, polyclinics and GP services. At the same time, the company is receiving serious criticism and reputational harm because of its role in the incarceration of children at Yarl’s Wood Immigration Detention Centre under contract to the UK Borders Agency. As the Chief Inspector of Prisons and Children’s Champion have publicly insisted, it is not possible to lock up children (who have done no wrong) without harming them,. Will the board agree to take legal steps to obtain release from its contracts with UK BA over administrative detention to improve the company’s reputation?’ Continue reading “Questions about child detention at Serco’s annual meeting in London”
In the week of International Children’s Day, on the 5th of June 2010, SOAS Detainee Support (SDS) will host RELEASE CARNIVAL
“We were sleeping and the officer came. It was scary and Mum was crying.”
“They broke our house.”
“They were bashing and kicking the door.”
“It’s not nice going to the toilet in front of an officer.” Continue reading “International Children’s Day/ Release Carnival – 5 June 2010”
We must not punish the children
Quakers oppose detention of migrants’ children, and so should a new government by Michael Bartlet
Quakers believe in the unique value of every individual. From this follows a sense of equality that animates Quaker thinking today. The right to asylum becomes a legal counterpart to the religious insight of the common humanity of us all.
Refugees are the human face of international injustice. They are the place – in this country – where we see the real impact of inequality: armed conflict, the inability of failed states to provide a secure home for their citizens, and abusive governments. The impact of climate change adds a further dimension in increasing pressure on land and resources. That is why migration policy presents such a difficult problem. It is easier to close our eyes and ears to the victims of injustice abroad than acknowledge its wounded presence at our door. Continue reading “Quakers oppose detention of migrants’ children, and so should a new government”
The Cast. Lydia Besong’s play “How I became an Asylum Seeker”. April 2, 2010 (without photos)
As this blog reaches it’s first anniversary the stories that have been whispering in my ear over the past twelve months are drawn together:
The Yarl’s Wood hunger strike. The forthcoming election. War and refugee movements. The unsavoury ways in which political parties capitalise on people’s fears about immigration. A lack of funding for investigative journalism, censorship – and recurring, stereotypical images of asylum seekers in the press.
Attending the “Arise and Shine” woman asylum seekers self-advocacy event in Manchester last week addressed all of these narratives.
The play and workshops were billed as a ‘Professional Development Opportunity’. As a trained teacher in Adult Education as well as a journalist I had a critical eye on how the event was organised. I was impressed from the start. Continue reading “Arise and Shine. Self-advocacy. Asylum Seekers.”