Immigration detainees move is step in right direction

ALLIANCE Assembly member and Equality Spokesperson Eileen Bell has said that the Prison Service’s decision to move immigration detainees to accommodation at Belfast Prison is a positive move.

Mrs Bell said: “Maghaberry Prison is a completely inappropriate location for the detention of asylum seekers, and this decision to move detainees to Belfast Prison is a step in the right direction.

“I understand that the accommodation is that previously used to house prisoners nearing the end of their sentences, and is more suitable. It is sad that the Home Office refused to even discuss this with elected representatives last year, but at least progress is now being made.

“It remains to be seen if the detainees will face a fairer regime and if there are other changes to come, but as a first step this is welcome.”

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