Caroline Lucas will call on the government to stop using immigration detention for ‘administrative convenience’ and end indefinite detention, as part of an event to mark International Women’s Day tomorrow. The Green Party MP for Brighton Pavilion is one of 99 women taking part in an action by Women for Refugee Women to highlight the plight of refugee women.
The charity has invited 99 women to write a message in support of refugee women, to reflect the 99 pregnant women who were detained in Yarl’s Wood detention centre in 2014. The women who have written messages include Mary Beard, Charlotte Church, Juliet Stevenson Bridget Christie, Oona King, and Yvette Cooper MP.
I will continue to call for an end to indefinite detention and an end to detention for all torture victims, sexual violence survivors and pregnant women. Furthermore, immigration detention simply must not be used for administrative convenience. Our immigration system must uphold human rights – that’s why this event is so crucial and why we must not stop keeping pressure on the Government to improve its record.
Caroline Lucas, Green Party MP for Brighton Pavilion
‘I feel so strongly that the UK has lost its right to call itself a country that protects and nurtures those fleeing persecution,’ commented Romola Garai, the actress who starred in Suffragette. ‘The detention of women who seek asylum is a stain on our national character and I hope the 99 women campaign highlights the plight of these women and encourages the citizens of the UK to fight to win back our reputation as a country defined by compassion and generosity rather than cruelty and suspicion.’
Caterina is a Solicitor at Wilson Solicitors LLP. She specialises in immigration, asylum and human rights law. She volunteers for the Liberty Advice Line.