Petition calling for end to child detention

No 10 Downing Street

No 10 Downing Street

A petition to Number 10 Downing Street calling on the Government to stop detaining children has already been signed by hundreds of lawyers, teachers and social workers, Bishop Michael Campbell of Lancaster, Bishop James Newcome of Carlisle, dozens of leading writers, plus Emma Thompson and Colin Firth.

The text reads:

In the UK we routinely detain the children of asylum seekers in removal centres, prisons in all but name.

We detain 2000 children every year, many for months on end. These children have committed no crime. They, or their parents, have simply exercised their right to claim asylum.

The children of asylum seekers are the only children who may be detained without time limit and the UK is the only European country where this happens. Australia, for example, has pledged to never put another asylum seeking child in a detention centre.

For many families, detention unearths past terrors and causes psychological distress. Cut off from family and friends, children in detention experience insomnia, weight loss, depression and self harm. Children’s Commissioner for England, Sir Al Aynsley Green, visited Yarl’s Wood removal centre to interview child detainees and called for child detention to end immediately.

If enough people speak out the government will have to listen. Please sign our petition.

Thank you.

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