Message from the Detention Forum – 1 June 2015

Firstly, a huge thank you to everyone who took part in our “#Time4aTimeLimit – contact your future MP!” on-line campaign before the General Election.

Over 500 people took time to contact their Prospective Parliamentary Candidates, and a total of 1,036 candidates were contacted. Some of you also forwarded us responses you have received from your candidates – we are now analysing the data so that we can follow-up on those candidates who agreed to work towards introducing a time limit on detention and who now sits in Parliament.

This campaign action would not have been possible without groups and individuals giving up their time to make it happen. We have never done anything like this before, yet it was remarkable how quickly everything came together as a result of great team-work. A special mention goes to Right to Remain, Detention Action and some of our Communications Working Group members. Our volunteers also did a fantastic job of spreading the word over Twitter – thank you.

Our next step is to reengage parliamentarians so that the momentum for change continues to grow. We are very pleased to know that many of the panel members who served on the parliamentary detention inquiry wish to keep up the pressure for change. The Detention Forum is also in the process of changing its structure so that we can work with more groups and individuals to challenge immigration detention.

In the meantime, here’s a top-tip from Right to Remain on what you can do now, taken from their great blog piece here.

What you can do now

If you have a new MP, you can arrange to meet with them and talk to them about detention in the UK, and how it has to change.  The first-step is the introduction of a time-limit.  The most useful tool to do this is the excellent report produced by the first-ever parliamentary inquiry into detention.  (Note: Page 2 of the Detention Forum’s briefing paper here summarises what the detention inquiry was and its key recommendations.)

The recommendations in that report are well-evidenced, reasonable and convincing – just the kind of thing MPs want to know about!

If your former MP was re-elected, make sure they also know about the report and its recommendations:

Detention Inquiry key recommendations