Asylum Update – August 28th 2008


The Centre for Research in Social Justice and Social Inclusion at the University of Hull has been commissioned to synthesise all the research over the past ten years relating to asylum seekers, refugees and migrants in Yorkshire and Humber. Email if able to assist with published or unpublished material, including grey literature and case studies.

HM Chief Inspector of Prisons has published a Report on a full announced inspection of Tinsley House Immigration Removal Centre carried out in March 2008. It follows a similar report published last week on an inspection of Yarl’s Wood Immigration Removal Centre. See also BBC coverage and NCADC commentary  

Journal articles

EU Refugee Qualification Directive: a Brave New World? by Hugo Storey, in the International Journal of Refugee Law Vol 20 No 1. The same issue contains a transcript of Remarks by Ms Erika Feller, Assistant UN High Commissioner for Refugees on the future Common European Asylum System. 

Local press, dispersal and community in the construction of asylum debates by Nissa Finney and Vaughan Robinson in Social and Cultural Geography Vol 9 No 4.

Pre-flight experiences and migration stories: the accounts of unaccompanied asylum-seeking children by Peter E. Hopkins and Malcolm Hill in Childrens Geographies Vol 6 No 3.


Policy and law

The Home Office has published Fair Decisions; Faster Justice – a consultation paper on the future of the immigration appeals system. See also press coverage


Asylum Update – August 22nd 2008


The Home Office has published its latest quarterly and annual asylum and immigration statistics:

Home Office Statistical Bulletin 11/08 – Asylum Statistics United Kingdom 2007 

Control of Immigration: Quarterly Statistical Summary, United Kingdom – 2nd Quarter 2008 containing quarterly asylum statistics

Control of Immigration: Statistics United Kingdom 2007

See also press coverage


HM Chief Inspector of Prisons has published its Report on an announced inspection of Yarl’s Wood Immigration Removal Centre carried out in February 2008.

Incidents of ‘serious self-harm’ in Immigration Removal Centres between April and June 2008 have increased by 27% over the previous quarter, according to information accessed by the National Coalition of Anti-Deportation Campaigns through the Freedom of Information Act.                          See also: Iraqi Kurd hunger strike at removal centre ends

UK AIDS and Human Rights Project have released Empty Promises: holding the UK government accountable for its commitments on HIV, Human Rights and Vulnerable people, a new report focussing on the effects of relevant policy and legislation on asylum seeking adults and children, amongst other vulnerable groups.

Grief Matters for young asylum seekers and refugees is a report produced by the National Children’s Bureau and the Childhood Bereavement Network based on a seminar in October 2007 attended by academics, practitioners, policy makers and others working in the fields of childhood bereavement and young refugees.

Updated statistics on monthly asylum applications in selected industrialised countries is now available from UNHCR Statistics under the category Asylum Trends. The latest data covers the period January – June 2008.


Policy and law

The Immigration Law Practitioners Association published updates on changes to immigration law, including: recent judgments by the House of Lords on Article 8 of the European Convention on Human Rights, long residence rules, the draft Immigration and Citizenship Bill, and how to request access to personal information held by the UK Borders Agency.


Liberal Democrat leader Nick Clegg MP has expressed support for the idea that asylum seekers should be allowed to work while waiting for a decision on their claim.


The Refugee Week website has been updated to include a variety of sources of information about refugees including cultural and educational resources, case studies and interviews.

Asylum Update – August 13th 2008


Global Health Advocacy Project has published Where’s the Consultation?, an analysis of previously undisclosed submissions to a 2004 Department of Health public consultation on ‘Proposals to Exclude Overseas Visitors from Eligibility to Free NHS Primary Medical Services.’ See also press coverage

Glasgow Anti Racist Alliance (GARA) has published State of the Nation – Race and Racism in Scotland 2008 – a report on data relating to BME people in Scotland, including specific information on refugees and asylum seekers and Glasgow as a dispersal area.

The Asian Centre for Human Rights (ACHR) has released South Asia Human Rights Index 2008 – a comparative evaluation of the human rights records of Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Pakistan, Maldives, Nepal, and India.

Irregular Migration from West Africa to the Maghreb and the European Union: An Overview of Recent Trends is a study of irregular West African migration to the Maghreb and Europe, published as part of the International Organization for Migration’s IOM Migrant Research Series (No 32).

The summer 2008 issue of the International Journal of Sociology (Vol 38 No 2) is a special issue dedicated to ‘Antiracist and Migrant Organizing in Four States of the European Union’ and guest edited by Helena Flam (University of Leipzig) and Catherine Lloyd (University of Oxford).

Education for Primary Care Vol 19 No 4 contains an article on How to teach trainees about primary care for refugees and asylum seekers by Gervase Vernon.


Policy and law

UNHCR has published a list of Selected Documents Relating to National Security and Counter-Terrorism Relevant to International Refugee Protection. The list includes main UNHCR policy and legal documents, international instruments and documents from various United Nations bodies.

The United Nations has published the Concluding Observations of the Human Rights Committee on the periodic human rights report submitted by the UK. The issues of detention of asylum seekers and deportation of foreign nationals to countries deemed unsafe are among those covered. 



The European Regional and Local Authorities for the Integration of Migrants (ERLAIM) will hold a self-titled conference in Brussels on 15 July The conference seeks to highlight the results of the comparative analysis of legal frameworks in South European countries, Slovenia and the UK and to promote the flow of information from a European to a regional level.



Refugee community organisations (RCOs) can now download a comprehensive fundraising toolkit from the Basis Project – a new support service for RCOs led by Refugee Council and Refugee Action.

The Refugee Council has published new issues of two bimonthly bulletins dedicated to the work of refugee community organisations: RCO News and RCO Women’s News

Asylum Update – August 6th 2008


Earned Amnesty: Bringing Illegal Workers out of the Shadows is a new report from the CentreForum think-tank which in arguing for an ‘earned amnesty’ states that asylum seekers to make up a ‘significant proportion’ of undocumented migrants in the UK. See list of press coverage here

Unreasonably Destitute is a new report from the Asylum Support Appeals Project focussing on the nature of access to Section 4 support for refused asylum seekers seeking to leave the UK.

Journal article: EU Immigration and Asylum Policy – The Hague Programme and the way forward by Richard Plender, in ERA-Forum Vol 9 No 2.

The Home Office’s Country of Origin Information Service has published new Country Reports on Sri Lanka and Zimbabwe (the latter with a later Bulletin update) and Key Documents on Burundi, Georgia and South Korea.


Policy and law

The UK Border Agency’s Section 4 Transition to Target Contracts project has ended with all c7,000 asylum seekers supported under Section 4 now in accommodation provided by those public and private organizations awarded regionally-based 5-year ‘target contracts’ to accommodate asylum seekers in 2006. In the project’s final phase 400 Section 4-supported asylum seekers were moved out of London.

The Home Office has released information on ‘Families in Immigration Detention’ under the Freedom of Information Act. The data covers numbers of adults, families and children detained in three centres between September and December 2007.

The August issue of Migrants Rights News carries a ‘critical review’ of The Communities and Local Government Department’s two strategy papers published in July, which covered the local management of migration impacts and its integration policies.

In this recent article, Council of Europe Commissioner for Human Rights Thomas Hammarberg tackles the question of limits on refugee family reunification in the light of international agreements.

The EU Commission has begun a consultation on the role of education in supporting the migrant integration of migrants and how migrant children can achieve more. The deadline for comments on the current Green Paper is 31 December 2008.

UNHCR’s Refworld website has created a one-stop access page to the key legal documents, declarations and resolutions from the UN relating to human rights, and major UNHCR policy documents.



Following on from a three-year community project operated by Refugee Action in Liverpool, Nottingham and Bristol, the Refugee Awareness Project has launched an interactive website “for people who support refugees in their communities and want to make their voices heard.”

“Maliamu” is a 15 minute docu-drama which explores the link between managed migration policy and destitution. The film is designed to help small organisations with fundraising and education and is available from the director