For our 17th monthly protest outside the gates of Hassockfield/Derwentside Immigration Removal Centre, members of No to Hassockfield were joined by women from the End Detention group, whose members have experienced detention, including in Derwentside IR.
Ahead of this months’ protest , they had this powerful statement to make:
‘Being locked up in detention made us feel humiliated, rejected, and as if we are less than human. The UK is supposed to be a safe country – but when you are detained you are ripped from your life, your mental health is destroyed, and you feel there is no one you can trust.
We need an asylum and immigration system that supports our mental health, handles our cases fairly and treats us with respect and trust. This means letting us live in and be part of our communities. The UK government should treat everyone equally. No one should be treated as if they are less than someone else. No one should be locked up in immigration detention.’
We are very concerned about conditions inside Derwentside, which is run by the UK’s largest detention centre contractor, Mitie. It’s Mitie that runs the Manston Processing Centre in Kent, recently in the headlines for the mistreatment of asylum seekers.
Two members of No To Hassockfield travelled to join groups from Liverpool and Manchesterat Mitie’s Manchester office on the 4th of November. This is what they said:
“We journeyed there to shine a light on Mitie’s appalling involvement in Manston processing centre, and wider profiteering from human misery. We sent a very clear message: stop profiting from trauma!
No to Hassockfield campaigners are committed to showing up at Derwentside IRC month after month to stand in solidarity with all the women imprisoned until the detention centre is shut down for good. We will continue targeting politicians, policy makers, the Home Office, the Home Secretary, and of course, private corporations like Mitie who are raking in blood money.”
The local MP, Conservative Richard Holden, says Mitie has created jobs. We say, are these the kind of jobs needed in any decent society?