On November 24th, at least 27 men, women and children tragically lost their lives seeking safety in the UK.
The appalling truth is that these deaths could - and should - have been prevented. People only risk their lives crossing the channel in such dangerous conditions when there are no safe routes available.
Liberal Democrats in the North East have unanimously supported calls to oppose the imminent re-opening of the former Medomsley/Hassockfield detention centre at Medomsley, near Consett, as an Immigration Removal Centre for an estimated 80 or more women.
The North East Liberal Democrats recent Regional Party Conference unanimously backed a motion unreservedly condemning the unsuitability of Government plans to reopen the facility at the site of the former Hassockfield Secure Training Centre in coming weeks, citing fundamental human rights concerns about the ethical and legal basis of the Home Office's policy of detention of vulnerable people.
The report looks at the catastrophic impact of another mishandled contract transition by the Home Office, this time for ASPEN cards, which left people seeking asylum without access to their only form of financial support, in some cases for over a month. In the run up to May 2021, when the contracts for these cards were due to change hands between providers, the Home Office was warned repeatedly about the grave impact of getting this transition wrong.
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