Detention Centres: Visits

Home Office written question – answered at on 13 June 2022.

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Photo of Baroness Lister of Burtersett Baroness Lister of Burtersett Labour

To ask Her Majesty's Government how many in-person legal visits took place under the Detained Duty Advice Scheme (DDAS) between 1 January and 31 March at (1) Brook House, (2) Tinsley House, (3) Yarl's Wood, (4) Dungavel, (5) Harmondsworth, (6) Colnbrook, and (7) Derwentside, immigration removal centres (IRC); and how many in-person legal visits have taken place under the DDAS at each of these IRCs since 1 April.

Photo of Baroness Lister of Burtersett Baroness Lister of Burtersett Labour

To ask Her Majesty's Government how many in-person legal visits in total took place between 1 January and 31 March at (1) Brook House, (2) Tinsley House, (3) Yarl's Wood, (4) Dungavel, (5) Harmondsworth, (6) Colnbrook, and (7) Derwentside, immigration removal centres (IRC); and how many in-person legal visits in total have taken place at each of these IRCs since 1st April 2022.

Photo of Baroness Williams of Trafford Baroness Williams of Trafford The Minister of State, Home Department

Detained individuals are advised of their right to legal representation, and how they can obtain such representation, within 24 hours of their arrival at an Immigration Removal Centre (IRC).

The Legal Aid Agency (LAA) operates free legal advice surgeries in IRCs in England. Individuals who are detained are entitled to receive up to 30 minutes of advice regardless of financial eligibility or the merits of their case. There is no restriction on the number of surgeries an individual may attend. If an individual who is detained requires substantive advice on a matter which is in scope of legal aid, full legal advice can be provided if the statutory legal aid means and merits criteria are met.

Legal visits can take place from both legal providers attending under the Legal Aid Detained Duty Advice Scheme and other legal providers visiting their clients who are in detention. In line with Government advice on social distancing, during the pandemic, face to face legal visits were facilitated in exceptional circumstances, and only if other means of contact (Skype, telephone, email) were not feasible or appropriate. In light of changes to Government guidance, face to face legal visits can now be facilitated. Safe systems of work are in place to ensure the safety of detained individuals, onsite staff and visitors during these visits.

The number of in-person legal visits, which includes both legal providers attending under the Legal Aid Detained Duty Advice Scheme and other legal providers visiting their clients who are in detention, that took place between 1 January and 26 May 2022, is set out in the table below:

In person legal visits

Detained Duty Advice Scheme

Total: all other in-person legal visits*

1 January– 31 March 2022

1 April 2022 to date

1 January– 31 March 2022

1 April 2022 to date

Brook House

4

10

90

22

Colnbrook

0

0

25

55

Derwentside

0

0

4

1

Dungavel

N/A

2

1

Harmondsworth

0

0

34

111

Tinsley House

0

0

0

0

Yarl’s Wood

6

11

36

28

*Does not include in-person legal visits carried out under the DDA Scheme

This is provisional Home Office management information that has not been assured to the standard of official statistics.

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