The government’s latest immigration statistics, released this morning, show that detention of EU nationals hit an all-time high during the last three months of 2016.
In total, 1,269 EU nationals entered detention between October and December. EU nationals now make up almost 1 in 5 of all new detainees.
Commenting, Bail for Immigration Detainees Policy & Research Manager John Hopgood said:
“The shocking rise in detention of EU nationals – first revealed by BID in January – continues unchecked. It is almost unbelievable that we’ve seen the number of EU nationals detained increase by 340% since Theresa May first took control of the Home Office in 2010.
“For all the government’s rhetoric about securing the best possible deal for EU nationals in the UK – as well as UK nationals abroad – these figures show its true colours. The government has a callous disregard for EU nationals’ rights to live and work in the UK.
“The number of non-EU nationals being detained actually fell during 2016, yet 1,000 more EU nationals were locked up. It is clear the government have decided that the referendum result has given them the green light to target Europeans in the UK.
“If other European countries were targeting British ex-pats in this way, there would be justified outrage at home. The need for closer controls on the use of immigration detention is more obvious than ever, and it is time Parliament acted to rein in the government’s out-of-control detention regime.”