Hunger strikes and protests at four immigration detention centres

Sign the petition and ask your MP to support Early Day Motion 1318 for an independent review of detainees’ grievances.

Harmondsworth detention centre: On Friday 2 May, 150 detainees staged a sit-down courtyard occupation and began a hunger strike. Their many demands included an end to the 'detained fast track' asylum system, access to legal representation, reinstatement of fax and internet facilities that are essential for detainees to communicate with the outside world including with their lawyers to prepare their case.

Home Office officials met with hunger strikers and promised to respond to their demands by Tuesday 6 May, so the hunger strike was suspended. The Home Office reneged on the deal and instead detainees are being interrogated individually about why they signed a petition for better treatment.

In Colnbrook and Brooke House detention centres, detainees also staged protests and hunger strikes. In Campsfield, hunger strikers demanded the closure of all UK detention centres.

All had to suspend their action after many were put in isolation or threatened with dispersal and/or deportation.

In the US, a recent 56-day hunger strike of 1200 migrants led to a Bill encouraging "alternative to detention" of undocumented migrants.

Protests against the Detained Fast Track (DFT)

Under the DFT scheme, people can be detained where the Home Office claims their case can be decided quickly. But a UKBA’s chief inspector report admitted “The screening process to determine suitability for DFT was deficient”. The whole case is decided whilst someone is detained. People are interviewed on the second day, receive a decision the following day and given just two days to appeal. 60 % of people are dropped by their solicitors and are unrepresented at their appeals. Where people don't speak English, translation services are inadequate or non-existent. 

Evidence of persecution which should establish someone’s right to asylum and safety is often arbitrarily dismissed by the HO as fake. People in detention, isolated from support outside have little possibility of challenging these kinds of injustices. As a result, 99% of cases decided under the fast track are refused.

Mentally and physically disabled people face the same mistreatment, and are denied adequate healthcare.

Watch video and read statement of detainees


1. To stop the Fast track System and its unfair trial

2. Not to send back home country by forcing and without confirming about the threats to our lives.

3. Stop chartered flights and giving us tickets too early while we have rights to fight for our rights in courts.

4. Not to stay in detention for long time in this bad situation and poor service.

5. To provide us proper medical treatment.

6. To provide proper legal aid till the case goes to the the higher courts which is a human right for a fair trial.

7. To provide a bail to mental and physically disturbed people.

8. To stop unlawful detention (many people are in detention more than 100 days)

Solidarity demonstration at Harmonsworth 6 May


> Sign the petition against the detained fast track by Harmonsworth detainees

> Email, tweet, call your MP to sign John McDonnell MP's Motion demanding an independent review of the detainees' grievances.
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