Children of asylum-seeking families who are detained in removal
centres experience physical, mental and social harm, according to a
new report by the charity Bail for Immigration Detainees.
The findings, based on nine in-depth interviews with detained
families, says families with children were traumatised by being
kept in removal centres for between 81 and 161 days.
The report says the detention process may involve excessive
physical force, intimidation and inadequate time for the family to
pack belongings or sort out their affairs. Health care advice and
treatment available to families and children in detention is also
insufficient, it adds.
The charity recommends that, as long as it remains legal to detain
children, safeguards to “limit the damage” must be introduced.
The charity’s policy and research officer, Sarah Cutler, said: “The
government’s response so far to the issue of child detention has
been dangerously complacent and inadequate.”
– A Few Families Too Many: The Detention of Asylum-seeking
Families in the UK from www.biduk.org