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When will there be a new Detained Fast Track for asylum seekers?
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Not in the foreseeable future, suggests Jerome Phelps of Detention Action over at openDemocracy. The Home Office had proposed new fast track procedure rules but have been politely rebuffed by the Tribunal Procedure Committee:
The political pressure on the TPC must have been intense. Ministers have repeatedly made clear the importance they attach to a Fast Track. Few of us doubted that a way would be found for new Rules to restart the Fast Track.
Not so. In a courageous display of judicial independence, the TPC has politely declined to create new Fast Track Rules. Without Fast Track Rules, there is no Fast Track appeals process, and no Fast Track.
True, the TPC has left open the possibility of creating Fast Track Rules in the future. But it has set the Home Office a series of tests: clear and workable criteria for who goes onto the Fast Track, evidence to justify fettering the discretion of judges to set timescales case-by-case, and evidence that the current approach is not working. It appears unlikely that these tests can be met, now or in the future.
If you are an ILPA member you can read the letter from the Tribunal Procedure Committee here.