Asylum Seekers: Missing from Registered Address Debate

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Baroness Taylor of Stevenage

Main Page: Baroness Taylor of Stevenage (Labour - Life peer)

Asylum Seekers: Missing from Registered Address

Baroness Taylor of Stevenage Excerpts
Thursday 2nd May 2024

(2 months, 3 weeks ago)

Lords Chamber
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Lord Gascoigne Portrait Lord Gascoigne (Con)
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Much as I am loath to do this, I have to disagree with my noble friend’s broad point. In the scheme that he referred to, an initial cohort of suitable cases, around 2,000 people, were identified for removal and placed on immigration bail with strict reporting conditions. For those outside the group, there is still a wide range of tools, some of which I discussed earlier, to maintain contact with them. This includes face-to-face and digital reporting, and it is worth making the point that many individuals are residing in Home Office accommodation. But it is also worth making the point that compliance for this cohort has remained high, and therefore we are confident of the whereabouts once the decision to detain is made.

Baroness Taylor of Stevenage Portrait Baroness Taylor of Stevenage (Lab)
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My Lords, Home Office sources have told the Times that only 400 to 700 detention spaces are reserved for migrants who are due for deportation to Rwanda. Can the Minister confirm that this equates to less than 1% of the current asylum backlog in the UK? The Prime Minister promised to detain everyone who has crossed the channel on a small boat, a record 30,000 last year. Given that we have only 2,200 detention spaces, what will happen to the remaining 28,000?

Lord Gascoigne Portrait Lord Gascoigne (Con)
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The point to make is that we were well prepared for this moment when it comes to Rwanda. I appreciate the time limits, but we have already done a number of things. We have trained dedicated caseworkers and increased the number of detention spaces to 2,200. We are doing a whole variety of things around ensuring that the legal proceedings are done speedily. We have looked at the flights; the Prime Minister has already said that this will be done over the next 10 to 12 weeks, and we also have an airport on standby ready to deliver what we said we would.