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Asylum Seekers

Volume 709: debated on Tuesday 24 March 2009


Asked by

To ask Her Majesty's Government what steps they are taking to reduce the number of asylum applicants who are detained on arrival in the United Kingdom; and whether they will review the quality of decision making under the fast-track procedure. [HL2149]

The majority of asylum applicants are not detained while their applications are under consideration. The decision as to whether or not to detain will be made on a case-by-case basis and a person will only go into the detained fast-track process where they meet the criteria set out in the published guidance manual which can be found on the following website at Guidance/Detention/Guidance/DFT_DNSA_intake_ selection.doc.

A copy of this document will be placed in the Library of the House of Commons.

All case owners dealing with cases in the detained fast-track (DFT) process have been fully trained and give each case full and careful consideration. Each case refused asylum within the DFT process has the same avenue of appeal as for other asylum decisions. The Asylum and Immigration Tribunal upholds the case owner's decision in 97 per cent of the cases that go before it. The UK Border Agency is taking steps to further improve decision quality. The Quality Assurance Team quality assesses 10 per cent of asylum decisions, including those taken in the DFT process, per month. In addition to this, each DFT decision is reviewed by line managers or senior caseworkers.