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There have been two big developments in the last week or so: the ‘ending’ of child detention and the successful challenge to the temporary mad cap (as I link to think of it).
On child detention, Alan Travis of The Guardian was clearly well briefed as he managed to publish a full and useful article even before the announcement was complete. Critiques have been published by a number of campaigners and charities. See this article by Medhi Hassan for a useful summary. Basically, detention may continue until May and even beyond then in some circumstances.
Despite these reservations, the announcement is undoubtedly good news. It also makes one wonder what on earth the previous government and UKBA officials thought they were doing in the past. Since the Coalition was formed UKBA has been trialling various ways of encouraging families who lose their cases to depart voluntarily. It turns out that telling them what is going on, informing them of consequences and assisting them to leave usually does the trick, as opposed to snatching them in a traumatic dawn raid with no warning. I just wish there was some way to hold to account those who were responsible for the previous policy and all the damage it did to those affected. May they and their children never experience anything so awful.
The other big news was the JCWI victory in the High Court in their challenge to the temporary mad cap on migrants under the Points Based System. It was inevitable that the Home Office was going to lose this – as sure as night follows day is no exaggeration. No Parliamentary approval for the change was sought, so it was struck down. The earlier Court of Appeal case of Pankina and High Court case of English UK had to be followed the court. What sort of duff legal advice do Ministers get, I have to ask? Or do they get good legal advice but go ahead anyway? Either seems possible.