Asylum Seekers' Update

On International Women’s Day we got the fantastic news that Amanpreet Kaur was released from detention in Yarl’s Wood IRC.  Ms Kaur is a lesbian woman who was detained for three months and twice threatened with imminent removal when the authorities refused to let her make an asylum claim based on the persecution she fears if returned to India.  She and her partner Ms D are now fighting for the right to asylum in the UK and need your help. During LGBT History Month we found out about Amanpreet’s plight and the immediate plans to deport her so we reported the case and took action. If you wish to support the continuing campaign for Amanpreet Kaur please read to the bottom of this article and see how you can help.
Meanwhile, Felix Wamala, a gay Ugandan who was faced with deportation on the 24th and the 31st of December last year (when the press weren’t looking) is still in Colnbrook Detention Centre on the edge of Heathrow Airport, where he has languished since Christmas Eve. His case was first reported by us and was subsequently reported in QX magazine in February following our press release (The Guardian and The Independent did not run the story although we contacted them both on more than one occasion). He remains in custody and the Home Office appear to have lost his file. Amnesty International has now taken up his case, but he is by no means safe and we urge you to bring his case to the attention of the Home Secretary Theresa May (see below)
Please write urgently for Ms Kaur (Home Office Ref: K1340215) to be allowed to make an asylum claim and allowed to remain in the UK with her partner:

  • See attached model letter to: Rt. Hon Theresa May, MP, Secretary of State for the Home Office, 2 Marsham St, London SW1 4DF Fax: 020 7035 4745 mayt@parliament.uk

 
Write/phone Yarl’s Wood protesting the homophobic, racist discriminatory treatment by staff. These are just two examples of many: an officer told Ms Kaur: “Don’t think pretending you’re homosexual or going on hunger strike will help you, they will not release you. If they cannot send you alive then they will send your dead body back to India”.  On another occasion when Ms Kaur was banging her head against a wall in desperation, an officer, instead of helping her, sexually assaulted her and an officer standing nearby laughed.  When Ms D tried to report what had happened to the Yarl’s Wood Manager and the psychiatrist, they claimed Ms Kaur had been hallucinating!
 

Tel: 01234 821 300

Tel: 01234 821 1000
 
Please send copies of your letters to Queer Strike queerstrike@queerstrike.net and Ms Kaur atfriendsofamanpreetandd@gmail.com