What follows is just a sample of the kinds of decisions that our clients are faced with on a daily basis. Yesterday’s incidents are not particularly unusual but might shock those not familiar with the travesty of immigration detention.
A piece written byGeorge Collecot, one of BID's volunteers and LLB Law student at King's College London about his experiences assisting detainees at BID's workshops in Morton Hall and The Verne Immigration Removal Centres featured in the July issue of our e-newsletter.
In the shadow of the Grenfell Tower tragedy and the terrorist attack in Finsbury Park, a significant judgment from the Supreme Court was promulgated, largely unnoticed. And yet its repercussions are significant for foreign national ex-offenders facing deportation from this country.
BID’s Assistant Director Pierre Makhlouf reflects on a recent high court decision finding that aspects of the Government’s approach to providing bail accommodation for immigration detainees are unlawful:
BID is deeply concerned by the government’s announcement – on the last day before the parliamentary recess – that Cedars pre-departure accommodation is to be closed and that families facing removal from the UK will instead be held at new accommodation at Tinsley House Removal Centre.
Today (Wednesday 27th April, 2016), the Supreme Court handed down its ruling in the case of “O” vs the Secretary of State for the Home Department. The case considered issues relating to the detention of people with mental illnesses, and the management of their conditions while in detention. BID’s Assistant Director Pierre Makhlouf reflects on the case and what the judgment means:
Last night, the House of Lords agreed to an amendment that would, for the first time, introduce a time limit on the use of immigration detention in some circumstances. BID's Policy and Research Manager John Cox speaks about what this move might mean for people in detention:
Bail for Immigration Detainees (BID) has succeeded in persuading the HO to reverse its decision to redact particular parts of its Country Returns Documentation Guide. Having initially refused to release the full document in response to a Freedom of Information request – a decision subsequently upheld by the Information Commissioner – the matter was resolved on the first day of the hearing of an appeal brought by BID to the First-tier Tribunal.
Bail for Immigration Detainees (BID) welcomes Yvette Cooper’s announcement that the Labour Party would introduce a time limit on immigration detention. We agree with Yvette Cooper that detention “can be deeply scarring”.
Bail for Immigration Detainees (BID) welcomes the publication of the report of the Joint Inquiry by the All Party Parliamentary Groups on Refugees and Migration into the use of immigration detention in the UK. This wide-ranging, careful, timely, and compassionate inquiry rightly took as its starting point the powerful testimony of those who have lost their liberty through administrative detention in the immigration removal centres and prisons of the UK.
1st December was the final deadline for evidence to the Justice Committee's inquiry on the April 2013 legal aid cuts. The committee are now writing up their report, which will be published in the new year. BID's response sets out fresh evidence on the impact of the legal aid cuts on detainees. As we explain, very many detainees cannot pay for legal representation, and lack the legal knowledge to properly prepare their own cases.
On 6th November BID provided oral evidence to the APPG on Refugees and APPG on Migration parliamentary inquiry into the use of immigration detention in the UK. BID's Dr Adeline Trude gave evidence to the panel on current difficulties faced by detainees in IRCs and prisons in getting access to immigration legal advice throughut their time in detention, the harsh conditions and barriers to communication with courts and lawyers experienced by the hundreds of detainees who are held in the prison estate outside statutory guidance and safeguards, and the delays of weeks or months in provison by the Home Office of Section 4(1)(c) bail addresses which stop detainees seeking release on bail.
On 9/10/14, the Independent Family Returns Panel published their Annual Report for 2012-14 - download this here. The panel advises the Home Office on the immigration detention of children and forcible removal of families from the UK.
Today, 1st July, the House of Commons Delegated Legislation Committee will debate the legal aid 'residence test.' Last week, BID sent a briefing to committee members highlighting the very damaging effect which the proposed residence test would have on immigration detainees.
On 4th June, a man detained under Immigration Act powers in a Dorset prison was found dead in his cell. The Independent reports that: 'Sources said the prison authorities “strongly” believed that he died of natural causes, but Dorset Police would only say his death had been “sudden” and that the matter had now been referred to the coroner.'
BID's legal casework now indicates that staff employed by Capita Business Services have ‘ownership’ of a cohort of detained cases. BID clients have received letters to that effect signed by ‘Capita Detained Casework Team, on behalf of the Home Office’, based at the Home Office National Removals Centre at Solihull.
BID has been granted permission to intervene before the Court of Appeal in the case of David Francis (C4/2013/2215B)(on appeal from the High Court of Justice, His Honour Judge McKenna  EWHC 2115 (Admin).
The first UK study of its kind, published by BID today, examines the cases of 111 parents who were separated from 200 children by immigration detention. The UK Border Agency repeatedly failed to safeguard children when detaining their parents, with appalling consequences for the children concerned. The report ‘Fractured Childhoods: the separation of families by immigration detention’ can be downloaded a the bottom of this page.
In our first report on bail decision making ('A Nice Judge on a Good Day: Immigration bail and the right to liberty ' (2010) available to download at end of page), we touched on the inability of the bail system to respond adequately to the needs of foreign national ex-prisoners.
Bail for Immigration Detainees (BID) welcomes the recent Inspection Report released by John Vine, the Independent Chief Inspector of the UK Border Agency (UKBA), detailing his findings and recommendations following an assessment of the UKBA’s efficacy and efficiency in managing and using its powers to deport Foreign National Prisoners (FNPs)
BID and The Children's Society have published a new report on detention of children, titled ‘Last resort or first resort? Immigration detention of children in the UK.' Please follow the links for the report and the executive summary.
The OutCry! partnership between The Children's Society and Bail for Immigration Detainees, that made such a vital contribution to campaigning for an end to the immigration detention of children, has come to a close. The funding for the partnership came to an end last month.
The OutCry! campaign is delighted that Nick Clegg has set out a timetable to end the abhorrent practice of detaining children in removal centres. We particularly welcome the immediate closure of the family unit at Yarl's Wood. The government is to be commended for taking seriously the need to put children's welfare at the centre of the asylum process.
BID and the Information Centre about Asylum and Refugees are working together on a survey on nationwide level of legal representation among detainees. Results are expected to be published in December 2010.
Human rights organisation Bail for Immigration Detainees (BID) has called for a major rethink of the immigration bail process. BID's latest research report ‘’A nice judge on a good day: immigration bail and the right to liberty’, launches tomorrow in Parliament at an event hosted by Simon Hughes MP and addressed by Baroness Helena Kennedy QC. The report examines the entire bail process, which for many detainees is their only opportunity to challenge their detention.
The Control of Immigration: Quarterly Statistical Summary (April-June 2009), released by the Home Office, contains for the first time more comprehensive figures about children held in immigration detention.
Bail for Immigration Detainees (BID) is a registered Charity No. 1077187. Registered in England as a Limited Company No. 03803669. Accredited by the Office of the Immigration Services Commissioner Ref. No. N200100147.
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