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

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“If more people knew what was going on, more would recoil in disgust and demand explanations.”

This year’s Unlocking Detention featured over 40 blogs. Massive thank you to everyone who contributed and shone a light on the reality of immigration detention! As we conclude this year’s tour, some of the volunteers running the project share blogs that have left special impression on their minds. If there was any blog that especially resonated with you, do let [...]

By | December 19th, 2017|communicating detention|

Guantanamo Bay, a tube ride away

In the final week of Unlocking Detention, we are now looking at where we will go from here. And we believe it is a perfect opportunity to publish this speech delivered last month by Jose, from the Freed Voices group to launch Amnesty’s #WriteForRights project. Jose says, ‘hope calls for action, just as action is impossible without hope’ and shares what gave [...]

By | December 18th, 2017|communicating detention, indefinite|

Life After Detention: A Film

The harm caused by detention does not end once a person is released. For many, the trauma of detention, and the struggles with uncertainty, continue. This is the subject of 'Life After Detention', a new film made in collaboration with the Life After Detention group from Scottish Detainee Visitors. The group filmed aspects of their life in Glasgow on their mobile [...]

By | December 13th, 2017|Dungavel|

Week 8: #Unlocked17 visits Morton Hall

This is Morton Hall detention centre in Lincolnshire, the focus of the eighth week of the Unlocking Detention tour. Up to 392 people - all men - may be detained here at any one time. It was turned from a prison to an immigration removal centre in 2011, though, like most other centres, it still feels like a prison. It [...]

By | December 13th, 2017|Morton Hall|

If only everyone could be welcomed as warmly as Paddington…

Jawad Anjum and Steve Rolfe are activists with Global Justice Glasgow, a group of committed people who campaign to tackle the root causes of global poverty and injustice as part of Global Justice Now, a democratic movement in the UK which campaigns in solidarity with people in the global South. They write for Unlocking Detention about a lively campaign that [...]

By | December 12th, 2017|communicating detention, Dungavel|

Visiting Dungavel for another year…

This week, #Unlocked17 is visiting Dungavel, Scotland's only detention centre. In this blog, Kate Alexander, Director of Scottish Detainee Visitors (SDV), reflects on another year of visiting Dungavel, and takes us on the journey that visitors make twice a week. Visitors also prepare a report after every visit, which Kate reviews. Here, she highlights the patterns she sees in these reports: [...]

By | December 11th, 2017|Dungavel|

‘A Prison For My Heart’

Coming out is often be a nervous and fearful experience - what does it feel like to that in immigration detention? Umar (not his real name) hd to do that to protect his life. We are grateful to Umar who said he wanted share his story in order to raise awareness about the plight of LGBTI asylum-seekers and refugees and [...]

By | December 8th, 2017|communicating detention|

Putting stock Home Office statements in the stocks

New Freed Voices member, John P.*, was recently released after ten months detained in Morton Hall IRC in Lincolnshire. For this #Unlocked17 special, he sat down with Detention Action to go through his thoughts on some of the stock phrases the Home Office trot out in response to anti-detention campaigners. * John P. is not the author’s real name. This has [...]

By | December 7th, 2017|communicating detention, Morton Hall|

Over 150 people demonstrate to mark 24 years since Campsfield ‘House’ opened

This blog was written by Bill MacKeith, joint organiser of the Campaign to Close Campsfield, for Unlocking Detention. Photos: Campaign to Close Campsfield On 25 November 1993, two white vans arrived at Campsfield main gates, 6 miles north of Oxford. They brought the first detainees to the new Campsfield detention centre from Harmondsworth near Heathrow. Since then some 30,000 people have [...]

By | December 6th, 2017|Brook House, Campsfield, communicating detention|

Week 7: #Unlocked17 visits Harmondsworth and Colnbrook

The seventh week of #Unlocked17 focused on Harmondsworth and Colnbrook: two detention centres alongside one another, a stone's throw from the runway at Heathrow airport. Around 1,000 migrants are detained across these two sites. Harmondsworth alone has space for up to 661 men - making it the largest detention centre in Europe (yet another shameful record the UK holds, alongside [...]

By | December 5th, 2017|Colnbrook, communicating detention, Harmondsworth|

It’s about time – a time limit on immigration detention

Since the publication of Detained Lives (which Tamsin Algers refers to in her earlier blog here), a campaign to end UK's practice of indefinite detention has been gathering pace.  Rachel Robinson, Advocacy Manager for Liberty, argues why the time is now to end this practice once and for all.   There are few things more difficult than waiting. At an [...]

By | December 5th, 2017|communicating detention|

Mapping detention

At Unlocking Detention, we occasionally receive emails from people, including those who say they are journalists, asking us to let them join the “tour”. These requests stem from misunderstanding: some assume we are organizing physical, guided tours of the inside of these immigration detention centres, while we are actually running a “virtual” tour unearthing facts and voices from these centres. [...]

By | December 4th, 2017|communicating detention, Morton Hall|