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Blog 2018-10-17T10:34:24+00:00

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“For me, Yarl’s Wood was another torture”

Image by @Carcazan. Content warning: rape, self-harm, suicide This piece comes from Gabby (not her real name), an activist campaigning against immigration detention in the UK. She was detained in Yarl’s Wood twice in 2017 before being released to continue her asylum claim within the community. She is now an active member of Women for Refugee Women’s network, regularly performing [...]

By | November 14th, 2018|Experts-by-experience, Yarl's Wood|

Week 3: Short-term holding facilities and prisons

Most weeks, Unlocking Detention visits a specific detention centre. Last week was a little different. From the 4th-11th November, Unlocking Detention focused on the hundreds of people held under immigration powers in short-term holding facilities and prisons across the UK. Those detained in prisons are even less visible than those held elsewhere in the UK's detention estate, and face additional [...]

By | November 13th, 2018|Prisons, Short Term Holding Centres|

Resisting state violence: The Yarl’s Wood hunger strike

Image by @Carcazan This blog comes from Fidelis Chebe, Project Director at Migrant Action. Migrant Action is a small organisation based in Leeds providing information, guidance, advocacy support and direct practical assistance to migrants who do not fit into ‘neat’ categories of migration, including those who have been detained or are at risk of detention. In February 2018, 120 people [...]

By | November 13th, 2018|Yarl's Wood|

Theresa: Letter from a hunger-striker

Image by @Carcazan. Content warning: suicide  This letter was sent to the Duncan Lewis Public Law team by Theresa (not her real name), a young mother, from Yarl’s Wood Immigration Removal Centre. It was originally published by No Walls. Theresa was one of the leaders of the high-profile hunger-strikes earlier this year. She wrote this letter the same evening that she had been [...]

By | November 12th, 2018|Experts-by-experience, Yarl's Wood|

“Immigrants emigrate, hopeful anticipate”

This contribution to #Unlocked18 comes from Ralph, who got in touch via Twitter. Ralph was detained for a total of 14 months in two prisons and a detention centre. Ralph tweets as @RO2tm Image by @Carcazan I was detained on two separate occasions. First was after serving a 10 month custodial sentence. The home office detained me for another 8 [...]

By | November 9th, 2018|Experts-by-experience, Harmondsworth, Prisons|

Detention happens closer than you might think

Image by @Carcazan This blog comes from Katherine Maxwell-Rose, Digital Communications Manager at IMiX– a communications and media hub for the refugee and migration sector. She tweets at @KatherineMaxi The BBC’s recent report into China’s vast detention centres was terrifying. Releasing new evidence into the nature of these centres, the report uncovered that China is locking up hundreds of thousands [...]

By | November 8th, 2018|Take action|

Immigration detention: Mental torture

Content warning: suicide and self-harm This blog comes from A. Panquang, a Detention Forum volunteer and member of the Freed Voices. A was detained for 9 months. I called and met up with my pub buddy. The guy is British, one of the coolest guys anyone could hang out with, as long as it is in a pub. I asked [...]

By | November 7th, 2018|Experts-by-experience|

Immigration detention centres have no place in Manchester or the UK

This blog comes from Lauren Cape-Davenhill, Organiser with These Walls Must Fall. An earlier version of this piece was published in The Meteor. As an organiser in the northwest of England with These Walls Must Fall, a grassroots campaign to challenge immigration detention, I was glad to see local media coverage of the re-opening of a facility by Manchester Airport called [...]

By | November 6th, 2018|Short Term Holding Centres, Take action|

Welcome and hospitality as a force of resistance and change: Sanctuary in Parliament 2018

Sanctuary in Parliament is an annual event which brings local City of Sanctuary groups from around the country to Parliament to meet their MPs to demand change. This year, it is aiming to generate an even bigger call for a 28-day time limit on immigration detention - and we'd like you to take action! Eiri Ohtani, Detention Forum's Project Director, [...]

By | November 6th, 2018|Take action|

Week 2: #Unlocked18 visits Brook House and Tinsley House

This is the first week that #Unlocked18 has focused on specific detention centres. From the 29th October to the 4th November, we 'visited' Brook House and Tinsley House, two detention centres next to the runway at Gatwick airport. Over 600 people can be detained across these two sites, both of which are privately run by G4S. Here's a recap of [...]

By | November 5th, 2018|Brook House, Tinsley House|

‘Your voice can make a difference.’ Expert-by-Experience interviews a former minister about the parliamentary inquiry into immigration detention

Unlocking Detention started in 2014. That year, Sarah Teather MP, who was then the Chair of the APPG on Refugees started the parliamentary inquiry into immigration detention, together with APPG on Migration. In this blog, K.A., a member of Freed Voices who was recently detained and released, interviews Sarah about her experience of running the inquiry. Sarah also asked K.A. [...]

By | November 5th, 2018|Experts-by-experience|

No one left behind: Including people detained in prisons in immigration detention reform

This blog post comes from Benny Hunter at Association for Visitors to Immigration Detainees. AVID is a small, national charity that supports volunteer visitors to people in immigration detention, wherever they are held. AVID has 16 member groups that visit in every detention centre in the UK, and some prisons, and works to raise awareness of immigration detention and advocate for [...]

By | November 5th, 2018|Prisons, Take action|

‘I leave you to judge’: Reflections from a visitor

This piece comes from Richard (not his real name), a volunteer with Gatwick Detainees Welfare Group who has been visiting people detained in Brook House and Tinsley House detention centres for 13 years.   In 2005 I heard about the work of Gatwick Detainees Welfare Group and got in touch with them to satisfy my curiosity. Since then I have [...]

By | November 2nd, 2018|Brook House|

Live Q&A with Marino in Brook House IRC

This week, Unlocking Detention has been ‘visiting’ Brook House and Tinsley House detention centres, near Gatwick Airport. The Gatwick Detainees Welfare Group put us in touch with Marino (not his real name), who joined us on the phone from Brook House for a live Twitter Q&A on Thursday afternoon. A huge thank you to Marino for his time and insight. [...]

By | November 1st, 2018|Brook House, Experts-by-experience|

How to: Help end indefinite detention

Zehrah Hasan is the Policy and Campaigns Assistant at human rights campaigning group Liberty. In this blog, Zehrah writes about Liberty’s campaign to ‘End Indefinite Detention’. Zehrah tweets at @zedhas3 The UK is the only country in Europe that locks up people without release dates. Alongside other campaign groups, faith leaders and all opposition parties, Liberty is calling for an [...]

By | October 31st, 2018|Take action|