So, Damian 'The Omen' Green has confirmed what many of us had assumed all along, that the government's promise to end the internment of migrant children was a lie. There was never any real desire to end the barbaric practice and it was merely a PR exercise aimed at keeping the likes of the LibDems tied to the coalition.*
The whole way the supposed initiative was announced, it's piecemeal application first in Scotland and then with the emptying of the families unit at Yarl's Wood, all without any apparent form of comprehensive plan** stank of prevarication and spin. This government is desperate to maintain its anti-immigration profile and anything that will contribute to that will be embraced even if it does mean state sponsored cruelty.
Ironically this revelation by Green, in the answer to a parliamentary question about the future of Yarl's Wood, comes on the same day as the charity Medical Justice published their 84-page report ‘State Sponsored Cruelty’, which details "the key findings from the UK’s first large scale investigation into the harms caused by detaining children for immigration purposes."
The report examines "141 cases... from 87 different families, involving children detained between 2004 and April 2010. These children spent a mean average of 26 days each in immigration detention. One child had spent 166 days in detention, over numerous separate periods, before her third birthday." And sober reading it makes.
'State Sponsored Cruelty' 16-page summary report
'State Sponsored Cruelty' 84-page full report
* And no doubt this will be just the first of many chippings away at the LibDem parts of the ConDem coalition agreement.
** Never a mention of Tinsley House.