The Home Office have announced that they’re soon going to submit a planning application to expand Campsfield. We haven’t seen the application so we don’t know what their plans are. But here are three reasons why we think the government shouldn’t be trying to expand immigration detention facilities.
1) It’s wrong to lock up people who aren’t serving a sentence for a crime and who aren’t waiting to be tried for one; immigration detention is harmful to those detained and causes unnecessary suffering.
2) Locking up asylum seekers and other migrants doesn’t do what the government says it does: deter future migrants.
3) Fewer people are being deported despite the growth in detention centres, so expanding Campsfield is clearly not ‘necessary’ from the government’s point of view. It would be throwing money at a need which doesn’t exist.
If you are interested in joining the campaign to stop the doubling of the size of Campsfield, email firstname.lastname@example.org
or call 01865 558145
UPDATE 24 September 2014 – The planning application still hasn’t been submitted yet but opposition is building, see the comments from the MP for Oxford West and Abingdon (the constituency that includes Campsfield) and the other candidates for the seat:
Nicola Blackwood MP has said “This proposal makes no sense for Kidlington or for our immigration system. We should be looking for alternatives to detention rather than expanding our detention programme and Campsfield House in particular has already struggled to manage with its existing numbers resulting in a series of serious incidents… I am quite clear that doubling the size of Campsfield would be wrong for Kidlington and wrong for detainees.” (Source: online petition)
Larry Sanders has said “the detention of asylum seekers… is costly, traumatic, inhumane and totally unnecessary. It would be perverse to squander large sums of money on the expansion of Campsfield and additional millions of pounds every year on maintaining it while we are said to lack the money to provide decent housing, and even adequate food, to hundreds of thousands of people.”(Source: quote given to Campaign to Close Campsfield. Added 22/10/14)