Immigration Detention: Victims of Modern Slavery

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 1:59 pm on 17th July 2019.

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Photo of Stuart McDonald Stuart McDonald Shadow SNP Spokesperson (Immigration, Asylum and Border Control) 1:59 pm, 17th July 2019

Immigration detention is a hellish thing to inflict on anybody; that is especially true of victims of modern slavery and trafficking. Will the Government accept that the supposed safeguards, particularly the gatekeeping process, are just not working? Signs of trafficking and enslavement are not being picked up, as those 507 cases show. Even when they are, immigration enforcement factors are given greater priority.

What will be done to improve the malfunctioning gatekeeping process and when will an overhaul of the rule 35 process be completed? More fundamentally, for as long as we continue to detain people indefinitely in these awful institutions, should not decisions on whether to detain any individual and on who should be released be made entirely independently of the Home Office? At the very least, we need much stronger and faster independent judicial oversight.