Medical Justice is a Core Participant in the public inquiry set up to investigate the mistreatment of people detained at Brook House Immigration Removal Centre shown by a BBC Panorama programme. Undercover filming by an officer showed distressing footage exposing racism, physical assaults and abuse of vulnerable detainees by officers.
In one incident an officer was seen strangling a detained person and threatening to put him “to sleep” and healthcare staff conspiring to cover it up. The detained person was a young asylum seeker with severe mental health problems whom officers were supposed to be watching over because of a high risk of suicide and self-harm. In other footage a control and restraint trainer is seen teaching officers to use racist language, to assault detainees and to “scrub the CCTV”.
As well as providing evidence about Brook House IRC, Medical Justice shows that healthcare failures are systemic across all IRCs, and that mistreatment of detained people continues.
To enable us to reach more vulnerable people in immigration detention, we need volunteer clinicians, especially GPs and psychologists, to visit clients in detention and write reports or contribute remotely, by email, reviewing medical records and providing opinions.
We also need volunteer interpreters to help us reach the detainees who most need our help.