Saint Kitts and Nevis

Not Available

Immigration detainees

2019

Not Available

Detained children

2017

7,587

International migrants

2019

53,821

Population

2020

Overview

Types of facilities used for migration-related detention
Administrative Ad Hoc Criminal Unknown

18 May 2021

The St. Kitts and Nevis Observer, “HMP Has Strict Measures to Avoid COVID-19 Outbreak,” 16 May 2021, https://www.thestkittsnevisobserver.com/hmp-has-strict-measures-to-avoid-covid-19-outbreak/
The St. Kitts and Nevis Observer, “HMP Has Strict Measures to Avoid COVID-19 Outbreak,” 16 May 2021, https://www.thestkittsnevisobserver.com/hmp-has-strict-measures-to-avoid-covid-19-outbreak/

Saint Kitts and Nevis (the Federation of Saint Christopher and Nevis) is a small archipelago nation made up of two islands located in the western Caribbean (West Indies). With a population of approximately 52,000, the country is the smallest in the Western Hemisphere. On 31 March 2020, following the confirmation of its first two COVID-19 cases, the country imposed a full lockdown that included a 24-hour curfew and the temporary closure of its borders. Many travel restrictions, including entry and quarantine requirements, which have been in place since April 2021, remained in place as of May 2021, including suspension of flights from Brazil, South Africa, and the United Kingdom. As of 17 May 2021, the country had recorded 45 cases of COVID-19 and no related deaths.

The Global Detention Project has been unable to establish the extent to which migration-related detention measures are used in Saint Kitts and Nevis as part of immigration enforcement procedures. There is also no information publicly available concerning COVID-19 related measures taken to safeguard people in immigration or police custody, or people in international protection situations.

According to UNHCR, from 2018 to 2020, there were five refugees in the country and no asylum seekers, stateless persons, or Venezuelans displaced abroad. The country has ratified only some of the core human rights treaties, including the Convention on the Rights of the Child and the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities. In consequence, Saint Kitts and Nevis received numerous recommendations concerning human rights treaties during its review for the second cycle of the UN Universal Periodic Review (UPR) in 2015, including: “ratify core international human rights instruments, including the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights and its Optional Protocols, the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights and the Convention against Torture and its Optional Protocol (Germany) (para. 92.3)” and “guarantee the protection of refugees in conformity with the obligations of the 1951 Convention relating to the Status of Refugees (Djibouti) (para. 92.74).”

In a submission to the UPR in 2015, UNHCR highlighted that despite being a party to the 1951 Convention relating to the Status of Refugees, the “country has not passed implementing legislation or administrative regulations on asylum or refugee matters, nor established a national asylum procedure” and has not acceded to the 1967 Protocol relating to the Status of Refugees. UNHCR made a series of recommendations in this regard, including, inter alia: “consider the passage of domestic refugee legislation; develop a national refugee status determination procedure”; and “facilitate full and open access to asylum procedures for persons who have expressed a fear of returning to their country of origin and to ensure non-refoulement of all persons in need of international protection.”

As regards the country’s prison system, in May 2020, the country’s Commissioner of Corrections announced the establishment of an early release system for prisoners. The Commissioner said authorities “have formulated a list of inmates who were nearing the end of their sentences and so these are persons who I had recommended to be released from Her Majesty’s Prison but there is a process that we have to follow. It is not automatic that they would be released.” At the time, the prison population in St Kitts and Nevis stood at 184, of which 162 were held in St. Kitts, while 22 were held in Nevis. In November 2020, prison authorities stated that sanitary protocols put in place since March 2020 were to remain in place until the end of the pandemic and include the obligation to wear a mask for staff and hand sanitisation as well as body temperature checks for any new inmates.


Last updated:

ENFORCEMENT DATA

Total Migration Detainees: Flow + Stock (year)
Not Available
2019
Total Number of Children Placed in Immigration Detention (Year)
Not Available
2017
Criminal Prison Population (Year)
219
2016
330
2013
Percentage of Foreign Prisoners (Year)
2.1
2013
Prison Population Rate (per 100,000 of National Population)
391
2016
611
2013

POPULATION DATA

Population (Year)
53,821
2020
56,000
2015
International Migrants (Year)
7,587
2019
7,400
2015
International Migrants as Percentage of Population (Year)
13.4
2015
Refugees (Year)
1
2015
1
2014
New Asylum Applications (Year)
5
2016
Stateless Persons (Year)
0
2015

SOCIO-ECONOMIC DATA & POLLS

Gross Domestic Product per Capita (in USD)
15,510
2014
Remittances to the Country
51
2014
Human Development Index Ranking (UNDP)
77 (High)
2015

B. Attitudes and Perceptions

MIGRATION-RELATED DETENTION

LEGAL & REGULATORY FRAMEWORK

GROUNDS FOR MIGRATION-RELATED DETENTION

LENGTH OF MIGRATION-RELATED DETENTION

MIGRATION-RELATED DETENTION INSTITUTIONS

PROCEDURAL STANDARDS & SAFEGUARDS

DETENTION MONITORS

TRANSPARENCY

READMISSION/RETURN/EXTRADITION AGREEMENTS

COVID-19

HEALTH CARE

COVID-19 DATA

INTERNATIONAL TREATIES

International Treaties Ratified
Ratification Year
Observation Date
CRPD, Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities
2019
2019
VCCR, Vienna Convention on Consular Relations
2010
2010
ICERD, International Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination
2006
2006
CTOCSP, Protocol against the Smuggling of Migrants by Land, Sea and Air, supplementing the United Nations Convention against Transnational Organized Crime
2004
2004
CTOCTP, Protocol to Prevent, Suppress and Punish Trafficking in Persons, Especially Women and Children
2004
2004
CRSR, Geneva Convention Relating to the Status of Refugees
2002
2002
CRC, Convention on the Rights of the Child
1990
1990
CEDAW, Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women
1985
1985
Ratio of relevant international treaties ratified
Ratio: 8/19
Individual Complaints Procedures
Acceptance Year
CEDAW, Optional Protocol to the Convention on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women, 1999 2006
2006
Ratio of Complaints Procedures Accepted
Observation Date
1/3
1/3

NON-TREATY-BASED INTERNATIONAL HUMAN RIGHTS MECHANISMS

Relevant Recommendations from the UN Universal Periodic Review
Observation Date
No 2015
2017
No 2011

REGIONAL HUMAN RIGHTS MECHANISMS

Regional Legal Instruments
Year of Ratification (Treaty) / Transposed (Directive) / Adoption (Regulation)
Observation Date
CBDP, Inter-American Convention on the Prevention, Punishment and Eradication of Violence against Women (Convention of Belem do Para) 1995
1995

GOVERNANCE SYSTEM

Legal Tradition(s)
Common law
2017

DETENTION COSTS

OUTSOURCING

FOREIGN SOURCES OF FUNDING FOR DETENTION OPERATIONS