Campsfield House immigration removal centre improving

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An Oxfordshire immigration centre criticised for its health care and education facilities has made improvements, a report has said.

The Independent Monitoring Boards’ (IMB) 2011 annual report said Campsfield House in Kidlington had “a good stable year on the whole”.

The report recommended appointing a learning and skills manager and a nurse trained in psychological techniques.

The centre holds men detained under immigration laws.

Previous reports by the IMB, chief inspector of prisons and the UK Border Agency (UKBA) had criticised health care, in particular the lack of privacy, provision of medical staff and poor communication.

‘Green shoots’
The IMB report said “progress had been made” following the setting up of an action plan.

It also said that “all necessary care was taken” following the death of a detainee in August last year.

Education facilities had also been criticised but the report said “green shoots of change” were appearing with the creation of a new study centre.

It also said the activities programme was providing a “relaxed and stable atmosphere” and included yoga classes, sports and plans for a magazine to be produced by detainees.

The IMB report said resolving ongoing issues concerning detainees’ property was proving “extremely time consuming”. Of 116 cases logged in 2011, 50% were unresolved.

It recommended that better procedures are put in place, especially when transferring between police custody and detention centres.

A UKBA spokesman said: “It is vital that our facilities are well run, safe and secure and we are pleased that the Independent Monitoring Board has recognised the improvements in education, health and welfare provision at the centre.”

The Campaign to Close Campsfield group has continued to hold regular demonstrations at the centre, which it says breaches human rights.

BBC © 2012

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