The evidence of abuse at Yarl's Wood is appalling

Published at: October 29, 2013 10:13 AM

Responding to HM Inspectorate's report into the facility and operation at Yarl's Wood Immigration Removal Centre;

 Yvette Cooper, shadow home secretary, said:

"The evidence of abuse at Yarl's Wood is appalling. The Home Office and Serco have a responsibility to act much faster and much more effectively to stamp out abuse and make sure vulnerable women get the support and help they need. Yarl's Wood is improving much too slowly.

"The Home Office has still not told us how long it knew abuse was taking place at Yarl's Wood. Or why it is still failing to spot the signs of trafficking or of mental illness. 

"The Home Office cannot shirk responsibility. Serco may run the centre but it is up to the Home Office to make sure people are being treated humanely with proper procedures and training in place.

"I called on the Home Secretary last month to get the independent UKBA inspectorate to review urgently the operation of outsourced centres run by private contractors such as Serco and we have heard nothing. This report shows the Home Office are failing in their duties and the Home Secretary needs to put that right immediately.

"Our immigration system must be efficient, effective and beyond reproach - especially in how it deals with vulnerable people. There cannot be any place for abuse anywhere within that system."

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