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New HM Inspectorate of Prisons report on Tinsley House detention centre


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HM Inspectorate of Prisons has published a new report following an unannounced inspection of the Tinsley House immigration detention centre. There are some broad positives:

We found a safe and respectful centre, where violence was rare, and when it did occur, was not often serious. Facilities and access to services were generally satisfactory and mainly predicated on respectful staff-detainee relationships, reflecting a positive institutional culture. Leadership was strong and provided good direction

But there are also several problems highlighted. In particular, casework, including decision-making and obtaining travel documentation for detainees’ removal, was often not progressed promptly. Many were not released on bail despite long delays and barriers to removal. And most Rule 35 assessments potential torture survivors were found to contain insufficient detail, some reporting was vague and most made no clear finding on the likely impact of detention on detainees’ health. Alarmingly, IT problems meant staff could not access a reliable report of detainees assessed to be at risk in any immigration removal centre. There’s more if you read the report in full.

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Colin Yeo

Immigration and asylum barrister, blogger, writer and consultant at Garden Court Chambers in London and founder of the Free Movement immigration law website.