GDP News & Activities

  • Infectious Disease: Stigmatization of Refugees and Vulnerable Migrants

    The GDP’s Michael Flynn was an invited participant at a workshop hosted by the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy at the Geneva Press Club entitled “Infectious Disease: Stigmatization of Refugees and Vulnerable Migrants.” The event, which took place on 27 November, explored the impact of stigma on the opportunities and protections offered to migrants, refugees, and asylum seekers, and identified areas of policy development, with a special emphasis on international organisations. Participants included representatives from the World Health Organisation, the UN High Commissioner for Refugees, the International Organisation for Migration, the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies, Médecins Sans Frontières, and the Graduate Institute. More information is available from the Fletcher School’s Leir Insititute.

  • Workshop: MSF Work in Detention Settings

    On 22 November, GDP Researcher Izabella Majcher participated in a workshop exploring Médecins Sans Frontières’ (MSF) role in detention settings, which took place in Rome. Majcher’s presentation examined the international human rights framework governing immigration detention, and highlighted instances of these standards being violated.

  • Joint Submission to the UN Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination: Qatar

    Foreigners account for nearly 90 percent of Qatar’s 2.2 million population, and thousands – including pregnant women and their children –  have been detained in recent years, sometimes in overcrowded conditions for periods lasting more than a year. The GDP and Migrant-Rights.Org’s latest submission to the Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination highlights the conditions migrants face in the country, and presents key concerns that Qatar should address. Read the full submission here.

  • Commentary on the Global Compact’s Objective 21: Returns, Readmission, Reintegration

    In mid-December, UN Member States will meet in Morocco to adopt the Global Compact for Safe, Orderly and Regular Migration. As part of a Refugee Law Initiative blog series assessing the final draft of the GCM, GDP Researcher Izabella Majcher examines the Compact’s Objective 21, concerning cooperation in facilitating safe and dignified return and readmission, as well as sustainable reintegration. The Objective, she argues, contains some laudable provisions, including on gender-responsive and child-sensitive features of return, the rights and best interests of the child, the right to family life and family unity (in the context of return of children), and procedural guarantees. However, the relevant implementing actions outlined in the Compact fail to take into account “a number of norms which are fundamental in the process of expulsion, such as the principle of non-refoulement, prohibition of collective expulsion, and the right to life and prohibition of ill-treatment during forcible return.” Read the full post here. 

  • GDP and Norwegian Red Cross Launch New Report

    On 31 October, the Global Detention Project and Norwegian Red Cross launched a new report, “Harm Reduction in Immigration Detention,” in Oslo. The GDP’s Executive Director, Michael Flynn, and Researcher Izabella Majcher presented the report, while opening remarks were provided by Executive Director of the Norwegian Red Cross, Bernt Apeland.  Anniken Barstad Waaler, Senior Adviser at the Norwegian Human Rights Institution, and Marek Linha, Legal Adviser at the Norwegian Organization for Asylum Seekers, provided additional comments. The Report, which was commissioned by the Norwegian Red Cross, is available to read online here.

  • Submission to the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child: Luxembourg

    In 2013, following its examination of the combined third and fourth periodic reports of Luxembourg, the Committee on the Rights of the Child (CRC) recommended that Luxembourg adopt legislation to prevent the detention of unaccompanied children. Today, however, the country’s legislation continues to allow for their detention—as well as the detention of accompanied minors—albeit subject to restrictions. In our latest submission to the CRC, the GDP poses key questions that Luxembourg should be urged to address. Read the full submission here

  • Criminalisation of Migration and Detention of Migrants

    On 19 October, the GDP’s Executive Director participated in a roundtable exploring the criminalisation of migration and the detention of migrants as part of a training seminar organised by Professionals in Humanitarian Assistance and Protection entitled “Core Training on Refugees, IDPs, and Forced Migrants: Protection in Law and Practice.” More information is available here

  • Informal Discussion on Migration and Human Rights with OHCHR

    On 9 October, the Global Detention Project will be participating in an informal discussion on migration and human rights with OHCHR, providing thoughts regarding the new UN Migration Network and non-governmental stakeholder engagement, as well as key concerns and priorities regarding migration and human rights.

  • Detention and Restriction of Movement of Asylum Seekers under EU Law

    On 5-6 October, GDP Researcher Izabella Majcher will participate in the IV CINETS Conference 2018—“Mobility and Security in an Era of Globalisation: Crimmigration at the Crossroads?”—hosted by Queen Mary, University of London. Her presentation, “Detention and Restriction of Movement of Asylum Seekers under EU Law: Deterrence, Incapacitation and Surveillance,” will take place on Friday 5 October, at 14:45-16:30. Other scholars will present on human trafficking and smuggling, the criminalisation of refugee solidarity, the emergence of “hostile environments” for migrants and refugees, among other topics.

  • Refugee Protection in a Hostile World?

    On 18-19 July, GDP Executive Director Michael Flynn and Researcher Izabella Majcher will be participating in the third Refugee Law Initiative Annual Conference in London. Hosted by the University of London’s School of Advanced Study, the conference will reflect on the apparent strengthening of anti-refugee feeling around the world and raise urgent questions about this trend’s present and future impact on refugee protection.

    More information about the conference is available here >

  • Submission to the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child: Niger

    Niger has long been a country of origin as well as of transit. More recently, there has been a steady flow of return migration as well as evacuations from North Africa. As international pressure (and financing) to manage irregular migration in the country grows, concerns are rising that increased numbers of migrants, asylum seekers, and refugees (including families and unaccompanied children) will be placed in immigration detention. As the GDP notes, countries that have received financial assistance from the EU and EU members seeking to prevent irregular migration and to improve migration management have seen substantial growth in the use of immigration detention. In this submission to the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child, the GDP urges restraint in the use of detention, and lists key questions regarding the country’s immigration detention regime—particularly regarding the placement of children in detention—that Nigerien authorities should be asked to address. Read the full submission here.

  • Challenging Migrant Detention: Human Rights, Advocacy and Mental Health

    Notions of the unwanted “other,” the “illegal” migrant, and the “bogus” refugee are increasingly prominent in public discourse, lending support to stringent border control policies whereby states are increasingly relying upon the use of detention to control the movement of foreigners. The detrimental impact of these trends on the health and wellbeing of migrants and asylum seekers will be explored at the conference “Challenging Migrant Detention: Human Rights, Advocacy and Mental Health” in Montréal, Canada, this week. Organised by UNHCR, McGill University Oppenheimer Chair in Public International Law, University of Toronto International Human Rights Program, University of Oxford Border Criminologies, and Association québécoise des avocats et avocates en droit de l’immigration, the international conference will bring together researchers, practitioners, advocates, and migrants to discuss global trends and avenues for change in immigration detention. The GDP’s Michael Flynn will be participating in the conference and give a presentation on the GDP’s database, the Global Immigration Detention Observatory. More information about the conference is available here.

  • Protecting the Rights of Migrants: International Norms Facing Contemporary Challenges

    GDP Researcher Mariette Grange gave a workshop to government representatives, academics, representatives of international and non-governmental organisations, and representatives of national human rights institutions as part of the “Protecting the Rights of Migrants: International Norms Facing Contemporary Challenges” course in Sanremo, Italy. Organised by the International Institute of Humanitarian Law (IIHL) in partnership with the Organisation Internationale de la Francaphonie, the course (now in its second year) is aimed at helping practitioners to deepen their theoretical knowledge of the international standards protecting migrants and to explore protection measures. Exploring how one can put international conventions and principles of customary law into practice, Ms. Grange’s workshop gave practitioners the opportunity to consider the most effective actions that can be taken to protect detained migrants and asylum seekers. More information about the course is available here.

  • The Effectiveness of the EU Return Policy at All Costs: The Coercive Use of Administrative Pre-Removal Detention

    In February 2017, the European Commission (EC) adopted a specific Recommendation to guide EU states in the interpretation of the Returns Directive, stressing that detention can be essential in enhancing the effectiveness of the return system. However, despite its administrative label, pre-removal detention as interpreted by the EC contains punitive elements.

    GDP Researcher Izabella Majcher discussed this issue at the “Understanding Causes and Consequences of Criminalization of Migration” conference in Ljubljana, co-hosted by the Peace Institute, the Institute of Criminology at the Faculty of Law Ljubljana, and the International Law Association of Slovenia. Majcher argues that employing detention as recommended by the EC is a manifestation of the phenomenon of “crimmigration”—or the convergence between immigration and criminal law. The consequence of this mismatch is that states use detention for punitive purposes but they continue enjoying broader discretion, which characterises administrative proceedings. Deprived of their liberty for coercive reasons, for extended periods of time and often in prison-like conditions, detainees are thus not granted adequate procedural protections.

    More information about the conference is available here. 

  • UN Global Study on Children in Detention

    On 10-11 April, the GDP’s Mariette Grange attended an expert meeting in Vienna, organised by the Ludwig Boltzmann Institute of Human Rights, to discuss methods and approaches for carrying out the UN Global Study on Children in Detention. This study, which was commissioned by the UN Secretary-General, aims to assess the extent to which children are placed in detention worldwide, to document good practices, and to provide recommendations for law, policy, and practice to safeguard the rights of children concerned and to significantly reduce the number of children deprived of liberty worldwide. The GDP has been active in providing the Global Study team with models for developing online data development tools and advising on issues specifically related to the immigration detention of children.

  • Joint Submission to the Universal Periodic Review: Saudi Arabia

    Saudi Arabia has long been an important destination for migrant workers, especially from across Asia, the Middle East, and the Horn of Africa. Recently, however, the country has started to pursue a policy of “Saudisation” to drive down the number of migrants, which has involved a series of deportation campaigns aimed at removing “illegal workers.” These mass removal efforts have led to huge numbers of people being placed in deplorable detention conditions as they await removal from the country. In a submission to the Universal Periodic Review, the GDP and Migrant-Rights.org have highlighted the country’s deportation campaigns and the accompanying ill-treatment that migrants experience. Examining the situation faced by female migrants, the submission also highlights the vulnerability of female non-citizens – including victims of trafficking – to detention and abuse. Read the full submission here

  • Submission to the Universal Periodic Review: Malaysia

    Despite its poor human rights record and failure to ratify pivotal human rights treaties, Malaysia is a magnet for migrants and asylum seekers. Every year, tens of thousands are placed in immigration detention in conditions observers have described as dire and unacceptable. In a submission to the Universal Periodic Review, the GDP has drawn attention to the appalling detention conditions – including the high death rates amongst detainees – and called for the Malaysian authorities to address several key questions regarding the country’s immigration detention regime and infrastructure. Read the full submission here.

  • Joint Submission to the UN Committee on Migrant Workers: Algeria

    It is widely known that migrants in Algeria are exposed to discrimination, arrest, detention, and waves of expulsions such as those in September and October 2017. However, despite both this and the UN Committee on Migrant Workers’ 2010 recommendation that “the detention of migrant workers in an irregular situation is considered only as a last resort,” Algeria fails to refer to immigration detention laws and practices in its second Periodic Report to the committee. In a submission to the UN Committee on Migrant Workers, the GDP, together with Le Collectif Loujna Tounkaranké, has highlighted some of the conditions migrant workers face in the country, while also calling on Algeria to provide greater transparency regarding its treatment of migrants. Particular questions were raised regarding the nature of immigration detention – such as who manages detention facilities, the conditions in which detainees are kept, the length for which detainees are held, and the safeguards to which detainees have access. In the context of mass expulsions, the GDP and Le Collectif Loujna Tounkaranké also called for Algeria to release more information regarding the expulsion decision-process, and the rights afforded to those subject to expulsion.  Read the submission (French) here.

  • International Women’s Day: Exposing the Plight of Women in Immigration Detention

    From the growing rates of female detainees encountering sexual abuse in the US and reports of male Libyan guards strip searching and beating women refugees, to the prolonged detention of pregnant women in Hungary and the forced confinement of unmarried foreign women who become pregnant in Kuwait, female detainees around the world continue to face deplorable detention conditions. Read more.

  • Joint Submission to the UN Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women: Saudi Arabia

    Saudi Arabia has long been an important destination for migrant workers – especially from across Asia, the Middle East and the Horn of Africa – and today, they represent 37% of the population. 31% of them are women. In a submission to the UN Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW), the GDP, together with Migrant-Rights.org, has highlighted the specific discriminatory practices based on gender that lead to the abuse and detention (and frequent abuse in detention) of migrant women based on their immigration status in Saudi Arabia. Particular concerns were raised regarding the conditions women face in detention centres, the detention and deportation of trafficking victims and the failure to enforce legislation preventing employers from retaining workers’ passports. Read the full submission here >> 

  • Should Europe sign the UN Convention on Migrants’ Rights?

    This International Migrants’ Day, the GDP’s Senior Researcher, Mariette Grange, participated in a France Culture live debate exploring Europe’s response to the International Convention on the Protection of the Rights of All Migrant Workers and Members of Their Families. She joined Gérard-François Dumont, Professor at the Paris-Sarbonne University, and Emmanuel Blanchard, President of Migreurop, to discuss the history of the convention and to examine why it has so far not been ratified by any European state. It can be difficult for European countries “to announce measures to protect migrants since migrants are often presented as a threat,” she said. Listen to the full debate here (available in French).

  • The Global South and the World: Past, Present and Future

    The Annual Conference of the Association of Global South Studies, held in Marrakech 14-16 December, featured a presentation from the GDP’s director, entitled “How the Global North is turning the Global South into an immigration detention gulag,” as well as a presentation on the new volume, “Challenging Immigration Detention: Academics, Activists and Policy-Makers.” More information is available here.

  • Is Ending the Detention of Children an “Alternative”?

    The GDP’s Michael Flynn gave a presentation on the challenges of pursuing an end to the immigration detention of children through advocacy of “alternatives to detention” at a colloquium at the University of Geneva titled “Migrations, State Obligations, and Rights in a Globalized Context.” The event, which took place on 12 October 2017, was part of Geneva’s annual “Human Rights Week,” sponsored by the Swiss Federal Department of Foreign Affairs, the City and State of Geneva, and the University of Geneva. More information about the event is available here.

  • Détention et autres entraves à la liberté de circulation

    Mariette Grange gave a course on “Détention et autres entraves à la liberté de circulation” during the first course on the rights of migrants held in French by the International Institute of Humanitarian Law in partnership with the Organisation Internationale de la Francophonie. Some fifty participants, mainly from francophone Africa, attended the course, entitled: « Protéger les droits des migrants : les normes internationales face aux défis contemporains » held in Sanremo, Italy from 9 to 13 October 2017.

  • Immigration Detention of Children: Coming to a Close?

    The GDP’s Executive Director was a panelist at a conference hosted by the Czech Chairmanship of the Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe concerning trends in the detention of children. The event, titled “Immigration Detention of Children: Coming to a Close?” took place on 25-26 September in Prague. More information about the conference is available here.

  • Joint Submission to the UN Universal Periodic Review: Germany

    In this joint submission, the GDP and Jesuit Refugee Service Germany raise concerns about the broad grounds used to justify immigration detention, the detention of children, the excessive length of detention, and the lack of progress in limiting the use of detention by employing non-custodial measures.
    Read the submission here.
  • Immigration Detention in the European Union: Research and Advocacy

    Izabella Majcher gave a presentation titled “Immigration Detention in the European Union: Research and Advocacy” at the Open Society Initiative for Europe‘s (OSIFE) Protection and Rights of Migrants Grantee Convening “Between Politics And Enforcement: Safeguarding And Advancing Migrant Rights In Europe.” Madrid, 18 – 19 September 2017.

  • The EU detention regime and its compatibility with international human rights law

    The GDP’s Izabella Majcher presented a paper on the the EU detention regime and its compatibility with international human rights law at the Migration Law Section of the 2017 Society of Legal Scholars (SLS) Conference taking place in Dublin on 5-8 September.

  • International Network for Research, Advocacy and Policy on Immigration Detention

    The Global Detention Project has teamed up with researchers from McGill University and scholars from across the globe to form this new international network focusing on immigration detention. The Canadian Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council announced in mid-2017 that it had awarded the network a grant. More information is available here.

  • Global Detention Project Submission concerning the Global Compact for Safe Orderly and Regular Migration

    The GDP submitted comments to the UN Special Representative for International Migration as part of the preparatory phase for the Secretary-General’s report on the Global Compact for Migration. The submission focuses on immigration detention, improved transparency and data collection on the human rights of migrants, and concerns about the human rights commitments of international organizations involved in global migration governance. Read the contribution here.
  • The Red Line Project: Challenging the EU’s Efforts to Blur the Line between Detention and Non-Detention

    The Global Detention Project is a member of a new research and advocacy project led by the Hungarian Helsinki Committee that aims to develop empirical evidence on how the EU and its member states increasingly blur the distinction between detention and non-detention measures and craft effective advocacy, litigation, and communications strategies to address problems arising from these developments. The project, which is to be launched in late 2017 with support from the European Project for Integration and Migration, also includes the Greek Council for Refugees, the Italian Refugee Council, the Foundation for Access to Rights (Bulgaria), and the European Council for Refugees and Exiles.

  • Expert Consultation of the UN Special Rapporteur on Torture: Migration related Torture

    The Global Detention Project to participate in the Expert Consultation of the UN Special Rapporteur on Torture on Migration related Torture and other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment. The event will take place on 28-30 August at Palais Wilson in Geneva.

  • Submission to the UN Migrant Workers Committee: Libya

    The GDP raises concerns about the severe human rights violations suffered by migrants and asylum seekers detained arbitrarily in Libya. It highlights reports of indefinite detention, abysmal conditions of detention, violence at the hands of guards and non-state actors, and re-detention after interception at sea. The submission urges external actors like the European Union to ensure that any bilateral or multilateral agreements concluded with current and future Libyan authorities protect migrants from arbitrary detention and torture. Read the submission here. 

  • Submission to the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child: Denmark

    This submission focuses on the detention of migrant and asylum seeking children in Denmark and raises several questions aimed at clarifying the country’s efforts to prevent abuses of children when in custody. Read the submission here.

  • Joint Submission to the UN Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination (CERD): United Arab Emirates

    In this joint submission, the GDP and the Gulf-based NGO Migrant-rights.org highlight concerns about the ill-treatment of foreigners in detention, the lack of publicly available information on detention practices, the arbitrary detention of women and children, and the risk of deportation and detention faced by domestic workers fleeing abusive working conditions. Read the submission here.

  • Submission to the UN Universal Periodic Review: United Arab Emirates

    This submission points to severe lack of transparency in relation to immigration detention policies and practice, including arbitrary arrests, prison guard brutality, and discrimination against non-citizens.

    Read the submission here.

  • Submission to the UN Universal Periodic Review: France

    This submission points to several concerns in relation to immigration detention, including detention of asylum seekers, children and weaker standards applicable to immigration detention carried out in French overseas territories.
    Read the submission here.

  • Debating the Global Compact for Migration

    Izabella Majcher to participate in a side event at the UN Human Rights Council titled “Local perspectives and global challenges for defending migrants’ rights,” which aims to broaden the debate concerning the shape of the new “Global Compact for safe, orderly, and regular migration” by proposing practical and effective ways of designing and implementing migration policies with a human rights perspective. The event, organized by Centro de Estudios Legales y Sociales (CELS) and Conectas Direitos Humanos, takes place on 21 June 2017.

  • Council of Europe Codifying Standards for the Administrative Detention Of Migrants

    Mariette Grange to participate in the Council of Europe hearing on the draft legal instrument codifying the existing standards related to the conditions of administrative detention of migrants, Strasbourg 22-23 June 2017. See details here.

  • Walls, Borders, and Bridges: Law and Society in an Inter-Connected World

    The GDP to hold a session titled “Challenging Immigration Detention” at the annual International Meeting on Law and Society which will be held in Mexico City on 20-23 June. Participants on the panel will include Michael Flynn (GDP), Hindpal Singh Bhui (UK Inspectorate of Prisons), Niels Frenzen (USC Gould School of Law), Michael Young (University of Texas at Austin), Matthew Flynn (Georgia Southern University), and Denise Gilman (University of Texas at Austin). More information about the conference is available here.

  • Submission to the UN Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women: Malaysia

    Nearly 90,000 people were placed in immigration detention in Malaysia in 2016, many of whom were women from neighboring countries. Conditions in Malaysian detention centers are notoriously bad, with reports of massive overcrowding, physical abuse, and numerous deaths. Read the submission here.

  • Submission to the UN Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women: Saudi Arabia

    Foreigners represent 99 percent of domestic workers in Saudi Arabia, where sharply restrictive laws leave Asian and African women vulnerable to abuse at work as well as during detention and deportation procedures. Read the submission here.

  • Refugee Law Initiative

    Izabella Majcher gave a presentation “The EU Hotspot Approach and Expansion of De Facto Immigration Detention” at the 2nd Annual Conference of the Refugee Law Initiative “Mass Influx? Law, Policy and Large-Scale Movements of Refugees and Migrants, ” London, 5-7 June 2017. See the details here.

  • Submission to the UN Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (CESCR): Australia

    This submission from the GDP raises concerns about the respect for the economic, cultural and social rights of persons it has transferred to Nauru and Papua New Guinea. Read the submission here.

  • When the Exception becomes the rule: European Union Societies on the move

    GDP presentation, “Trends in Immigration Detention in the European Union,” which outlines the GDP’s ongoing research on immigration detention in EU countries, at the conference When the Exception becomes the rule: European Union Societies on the move, hosted by International Institute for the Sociology of Law (Oñati, Spain, 4-5 May 2017). See the programme here.

  • Measuring and gathering data on immigration detention

    GDP workshop, “Measuring and gathering data on immigration detention,” at the European Network on Statelessness Conference Protecting Stateless Persons From Arbitrary Detention (Budapest, Hungary, 4-5 May 2017). See the programme here.

  • Statement to the WG on the Use of Mercenaries

    The GDP’s Statement to the Working Group’s Panel “PMSCs in places of deprivation of liberty and their impact on human rights” raises concerns about the impact of the use of multinational companies in immigration detention centres on the human rights of detained migrants and refugees. Read the statement here.

  • Joint Submission to the UN Universal Periodic Review: Czech Republic

    This joint submission from the GDP, the Organization for Aid to Refugees, and Forum for Human Rights raises concerns about the extensive grounds used to justify detention, the widespread detention of families with children, and poor conditions of detention.
    Read the submission here.
  • Submission to the UN Universal Periodic Review: Guatemala

    This submission highlights the lack of clear regulations for immigration detention in Guatemala’s domestic law as well as reports about inadequate conditions of detention.
    Read the submission here.
  • Submission to the UN Universal Periodic Review: Argentina

    The GDP raises concerns about Argentina’s decision to open a new detention centre and its recent decree providing for unlimited detention and weakening procedural standards.

    Read the submission here.
  • Submission to the UN Committee on Migrant Workers: Algeria

    In this submission the Global Detention Project raises questions about the extent of criminal prosecution in Algeria of undocumented migrants, details about the locations of detainees, and inter alia the lack of information about apprehended migrants and refugees from sub-Saharan countries. Read the submission here.

  • Submission to the UN Committee on Migrant Workers: Egypt

    This submission addresses a number of concerns regarding immigration detention practices in Egypt, including the widespread detention of non-citizens, lack of procedural guarantees, and the impact that cooperation with the EU may be having on immigration detention policies. Read the submission here.

  • Joint GDP and Pueblos Unidos Submission to the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child: Spain

    In this joint submission to the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child, the Global Detention Project and Pueblos Unidos point to gaps in Spain’s implementation of the Convention on the Rights of the Child with respect to the deprivation of liberty of asylum seekers and undocumented migrants. Read the submission here.

  • GDP at the 25th Anniversary of the WGAD

    The GDP’s senior researcher Mariette Grange was a a panelist at the 25th anniversary commemoration of the UN Working Group on Arbitrary Detention, which took place at the Palais des Nation in Geneva on 28 November 2016. She gave a presentation entitled “Data Collection and Tracking State Detention Practices: Examples of State Legislation and Practices – Findings of the Global Detention Project,” which is available here.

  • GDP Briefing to UN Working Group on the Use of Mercenaries

    The GDP’s executive director gave a briefing to the UN Working Group on the Use of Mercenaries on the key multinational corporations that operate immigration detention centres around. The Working Group intends to include this issue in its 2017 report to the UN General Assembly report. Information about the list of companies discussed during the briefing is available here.

  • CINETS Conference

    Three GDP papers were presented at the 3rd Annual CINETS Conference, “Crimmigration in the Shadow of Sovereignty,” held at the University of Maryland on 6-7 October 2016: Galina Cornelisse, “The Constitutionalisation of Immigration Detention“; Matthew Flynn, “Capitalism and Immigration Control“; and Michael Flynn, “Detained Beyond the Sovereign.” Information about the conference is available here.

  • Submission to the Universal Periodic Review (UPR): Indonesia

    The submission highlights overcrowding in the country’s detention facilities, the detention of children, the appalling conditions, and the role of Australia and the International Organization for Migration in expanding Indonesia’s detention system. The submission is available here.

  • Submission to the UN Committee on Migrant Workers (CMW): Honduras

    In this submission the Global Detention Project highlights a number of questions in relation to immigration detention practices in Honduras, including with respect to the grounds for detention, the maximum period of detention, detention of vulnerable persons and conditions of detention. The submission is available here.

  • Submission to the UN Committee on Migrant Workers (CMW): Mexico

    In this submission the Global Detention Project highlights a number of concerns, including the lack of transparency in the law in relation to legal status of immigration detainees, detention of children, prolonged detention for challenging detention or lodging an asylum claim, time limits for detention, mandatory detention and monitoring of detention. This submission is available here.

  • Human Rights, Business, and Immigration Detention

    The GDP, No Business in Detention, and the Human Rights Law Centre discuss the growing involvement of private companies in immigration detention centres at this Side Event at the 32nd session of the UN Human Rights Council. More information about the event event is available here

  • Submission to the Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women: FRANCE

    In its Submission to the CEDAW concerning France, the GDP highlights the lack of specific provisions for the detention of women, health concerns regarding pregnant women in detention, and allegations of mistreatment, among other issues. Read the Submission here

  • Public Launch of the GDP’s Online Database

    The Global Detention Project is pleased to announce that it will be co-hosting a parallel event at the upcoming session of the UN Human Rights Council at which we will present the GDP’s new website and online database. The event, titled “Tracking Immigration Detention Data Globally: An Introduction to the Global Detention Project Online Database,” will take place on 14 June at the United Nations in Geneva and be co-hosted by Franciscans International, Edmund Rice International, Destination Justice, and the International Commission of Jurists.

    When: 12:00-13:00

    Where: Room IV at Palais des Nations, C Building

     

  • Submission to the UN Human Rights Committee: Denmark

    In its Submission to the HRC, the GDP raises concerns about whether a new amendment to Denmark’s Aliens Act increases the possibility that asylum seekers could face arbitrary detention when they are part of so-called massive arrivals. See: https://www.globaldetentionproject.org/publications/submission-un-human-rights-committee-denmark

  • Submissions to the Committee on the Rights of the Child: Bulgaria and Slovakia

    The GDP has made submissions on Bulgaria and Slovakia to the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child addressing concerns about the treatment of accompanied and unaccompanied minors in official custody as part of the committee’s consideration of the periodic reports from both countries.  

  • Submission to the Human Rights Committee on Thailand

    On 7 April the GDP submitted a list of questions and concerns related to the treatment of migrants and asylum seekers in detention in Thailand to the UN Human Rights Committee’s country report task on the adoption of the list of issues to be included in the HRC’s second periodic report on Thailand. See: https://www.globaldetentionproject.org/publications/submission-human-rights-committee-thailand.

     

  • The Plight of Children and Women Seeking Asylum in Australia

    Mariette Grange served as a panelist at this side event to the UN Human Rights Council. The event was organized by Edmund Rice International, Franciscans International, Destination Justice, and ChilOut. Other panelists included Phil Glendenning, Refugee Council of Australia; Mohammad Ali Baqiri, former detainee at the offshore detention centre in Nauru and the 2015 ChilOut Youth Ambassador; and Claire Mahon of the Global Human Rights Clinic.

  • Submission to the Committee on the Rights of the Child: Qatar

    On 1 March the GDP provided a written submission to the Committee on the Rights of the Child on Qatar ahead of its periodic assessment of the countries’ implementation of the Convention on the Rights of the Child.  See the GDP’s Submissions page.

  • Submission for CMW-CRC General Comment

    On 29 February the GDP provided a written submission to the Committee on Migrant Workers and the Committee on the Rights of the Child for its Joint General Comment on the Human Rights of Children in the Context of International Migration. The submisison can be viewed here

  • Conference: Privatization in the International Arena

    On 19 February, the GDP’s Michael Flynn presented a paper on non-state actor involvement in immigration detention regimes at this conference, which was held at the California Western School of Law in San Diego. More information about the event is availalbe here

  • Submissions to the UN Human Rights Committee

    The GDP has provided Submissions to the UN Human Rights Committee on Costa Rica and Sweden as part of the Committee’s periodic assessment of the countries’ implementation of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights. See the GDP’s Submissions page

  • Working Group on Arbitrary Detention

    The GDP’s Mariette Grange participated in an informal meeting between the WGAD and civil society partners, which took place on 3 December 2015 at the Palais des Nations in Geneva. 

  • Workshop: Detention in Latin America

    On 25-27 November, Michael Flynn participated in a series of lectures and workshops in Buenos Aires organized by the University of Lanus (Centro de Justicia y Derechos Humanos), UNHCR, the IOM, the Centro de Estudios Legales y Sociales, as well as several other local and regional organizations around the theme of human rights and migration in Latin America. More information available here.

  • Workshop: Detention Norms and Lebanon

    On 17 November Izabella Majcher gave a training session titled “Freedom of Movement and Restrictions thereof, including Detention” as part of the International Refugee Law Course for Lebanese officials organised by the International Institute of Humanitarian Law (IIHL) and UNHCR, at IIHL, Sanremo, Italy.

  • Detention and the EU Returns Directive

    On 6 October, Izabella Majcher publised an article titled “The CJEU’s Ruling in Celaj: Criminal penalties, entry bans and the Returns Directive” on the website EU Law Analysis, which analyses the most recent ruling by the Court of Justice of the European Union regarding the EU Returns Directive.

  • New journal publication

    Matthew Flynn’s 2015 GDP Working Paper Bureaucratic Capitalism and the Immigration Detention Complex was adapted for publication for a peer-reviewed online journal from Addleton Academic Publishing. More information available here

  • European Programme for Integration and Migration (EPIM)

    In early September, GDP staff members participated in a series of workshops in Cyprus and Bulgaria during which new EPIM-supported advocacy projects on immigration detention designed by local NGOs were officially launched. GDP staff served as external advisers to the EPIM team evaluating the projects. The projects are part of EPIM’s 2016-2018 pilot sub-fund on immigration detention.

  • New publication

    In July the Silesian Journal of Legal Studies published Izabella Majcher’s article “Human Rights Violations During EU Border Surveillance and Return Operations: Frontex’s Shared Responsibility or Complicity?“.

  • University of Cambridge

    Prof. Matthew Flynn of Georgia Southern University, a GDP contributing writer, presented his GDP Working Paper titled “Bureacratic Capitalism and the Immigration Detention Complex” at the Annual Conference of the International Social Theory Consortium, University of Cambridge, 17-19 June 2015 (http://socialtheory.org/2015-annual-conference.html).

  • New Discussion Paper

    In the framework of the global campaign to end child detention, the GDP issued a discussion paper in June titled “Children in Immigration Detention: Challenges of Measurement and Definition,” which advances some preliminary proposals on the development of a methodology that would allow for careful designation of custodial arrangements with a particular focus on the facilities used to accommodate child migrants and asylum seekers.

  • entreParentesis

    Mariette Grange was invited to participate in this Jesuit-orgnaized initiative aimed at improving cross-border dialogue, which was held in Madrid on 28 May. More information about this initiative is available here.

  • UN Working Group on Arbitrary Detention

    The WGAD adopted new guidelines and principles on which a court review of the lawfulness of detention should be based. The WGAD included nearly all the edits and additions suggested by the GDP in 2014 and 2015 with reference to the specific situation of persons in immigration detention. The draft basic principles and guidelines will be presented to the Human Rights Council during its 30th session in September 2015.

  • Frontex

    The GDP has submitted comments in response to the European Ombudsman’s own-initiative inquiry OI/9/2014/MHZ concerning the Frontex (European Agency for the Management of Operational Cooperation at the External Borders of the Member States of the European Union) respect for fundamental rights during joint return operations.

  • Yale University

    Michael Flynn gave a presentation at the conference “Detention on a Global Scale: Punishment and Beyond,” hosted by the Yale Law School on 9-10 April. Flynn’s presentation was titled “Liberty or Security? Human Rights and the Expanding Landscape of Immigration Detention.” Other presenters on Flynn’s panel included Mary Bosworth, Allegra McLeod, and Zonke Majodina.

  • University of Athens

    On 20 March Izabella Majcher presented a paper titled “Immigration Detention under EU Law and International Obligations of Member States” at the conference “Regulating ‘irregular’ migration: International obligations and international responsibility,” held at the National and Kapodistrian University of Athens.

  • UN Working Group on Arbitrary Detention

    At the request of the Working Group on Arbitrary Detention, the GDP submitted a list of final edits and additions for the “draft basic principles and guidelines on remedies and procedures on the right of anyone deprived of his or her liberty by arrest or detention to bring proceedings before court, in order that the court may decide without delay on the lawfulness of his or her detention and order his or her release if the detention is not lawful.” Read the submission here. This intervention follows on the GDP’s previous submission from January 2014, which were provided as part of a thematic study undertaken by the WGAD in preparation for the drafting of the basic principles and guidelines. Read the January 2014 submission.

  • UN Convention on Migrant Workers

    In March the GDP provided submissions related to Articles 16 and 17 of the ICMW to the UN Committee on Migrant Workers for the List of Issues Prior to Reporting for Honduras and Nicaragua, to be adopted at the Committee’s 22 session in April 2015.

  • International Studies Association

    Cecilia Cannon, former research assistant at the GDP, presented a paper she coauthored with Michael Flynn at the ISA’s 56th Annual Convention in New Orleans (18-21 February 2015). The paper was titled “Does Privatization Explain the Poor Treatment of People in Immigration Detention?”

  • Odysseus Conference

    On 6 February 2015, Mariette Grange chaired the session “Introducing the notion of alternatives to detention in the EU policy-making” at the final conference of the Odysseus Network’s “Made Real” Project, “Alternatives to Immigration Detention in The EU: The Time For Implementation,” which was held at the Université Libre de Bruxelles, Belgium.

  • Texas International Law Journal Symposium

    Michael Flynn gave a presentation titled “Concealing and Revealing: The Role of Liberal Norms in the Evolution of Detention Regimes” at the Texas International Law Journal Symposium “Immigration and Freedom of Movement” (University of Texas at Austin, 5 February 2015).

  • Loterie Romande

    The Global Detention Project recently received a grant from Loterie Romande, a lottery of the French-speaking region of Switzerland that was created to support civil society initiatives.

  • Discipline and Punish? Analysis of the Purposes of Immigration Detention in Europe

    By Izabella Majcher (Global Detention Project) and Clément de Senarclens (University of Neuchatel). AmeriQuests11(2), December 2014. Read.

  • Immigration detention in Europe: What are the facts? A new European Migration Network Study

    Blog post by Izabella Majcher. EU Law and Analysis. December 2014. Read.

  • World Forum on Human Rights

    Mariette Grange made a presentation entitled “La détention liée au statut migratoire: cadre juridique, spécificité et défis pour la recherche” at the World Forum on Human Rights held in Marrakesh, Morocco, on 29 November 2014.

  • International Crime and Punishment Film Festival

    The Global Detention Project, with support from the United Nations Children’s Fund, participated in the 4th International Crime and Punishment Film Festival, held in Istanbul on 7-14 November. The theme of this year’s festival was migration. The GDP’s contribution included co-hosting a showing of the award-winning documentary film Vol spécial (Special Flight), which was followed by a panel discussion between the GDP’s Michael Flynn and the the film’s director Fernand Melgar, a member of the GDP’s Executive Committee. Also, as part of the festival’s academic program, Flynn gave a presentation entitled “Children in Immigration Detention: A Hidden Problem.” Information about the festival is available here.
     

  • PRESS RELEASE: Global Detention Project launches as independent association

    The Global Detention Project (GDP) announces today that it has re-launched as an independent non-profit research centre after being based for eight years at the Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies. Read press release.

  • CINETS Network

    On 10 October Izabella Majcher presented a paper titled “European Union Immigration Detention Regime: A Manifestation of Crimmigration?” at the second CINETS conference  “Borders of Crimmigration,” in Leiden, Netherlands.

  • University of Geneva

    On 17 September,  Mariette Grange and Izabella Majcher gave a presentation titled “Les frontières de la détention administrative” at the conference “Migrations et frontières: chercheurs, praticiens et artistes croisent leurs regards,” which was hosted by the University of Geneva in coordination with asile.ge et le Centre social protestant Genève.

  • Asia Pacific Refugee Rights Network

    On 3 September, Izabella Majcher gave a presentation titled “Measuring Immigration Detention: An Introduction to the Global Detention Project’s Data Design and Methodology” at the 5th Asia Pacific Consultation on Refugee Rights, Bangkok, Thailand.

  • UN Working Group on Arbitrary Detention

    On 2 September, Michael Flynn was a panelist at UN Working Group on Arbitrary Detention’s “Stakeholders Consultation to prepare draft principles and guidelines on remedies and procedures on the right to court review of detention.” His statement is available here.

  • Center for Migration Studies

    On 21 July, the Center for Migration Studies in New York hosted a dialogue examining the global expansion of immigration-related detention practices. Featured panelists were Michael Flynn and Dora Schriro, the former head of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s Office of Detention Policy and Planning.

  • New publication

    On 21 July, the blog EU Law and Analysis published an article by Izabella Majcher titled “The EU Returns Directive and the Use of Prisons for Detaining Migrants in Europe.”

  • New publication

    In July, the Journal on Migration and Human Security, a peer-reviewed academic publication of the Center for Migration Studies, published an article by Michael Flynn titled “There and Back Again: On the Diffusion of Immigration Detention.” The article employs concepts developed in the literature on diffusion theory to explain the mechanics that have enabled the spread of immigration detention practices around the globe. The article is available here.

  • Japan Bar Association

    On 15-16 July, the Japan Bar Association (JBA) hosted Michael Flynn during its annual visit to the controversial Japan East Detention Center outside Tokyo, where several detainees have died in recent months. Following the visit, Flynn gave a presentation at the JBA on how Japan’s policies and practices compare to those of other countries.

  • UN Migrant Workers Convention

    On 15 July, Mariette Grange gave a presentation on the “Role of civil society in campaigning for and using the Migrant Workers Convention” at an awareness-raising event hosted by the European Inter-University Centre for Human Rights and Democratisation in Venice, Italy. Information about the event is available here.

  • International Sociological Association

    On 14 July, Prof. Matthew Flynn of Georgia Southern University and the GDP’s Michael Flynn presented a paper on immigration detention at the International Sociological Association’s World Congress in Yokohama, Japan. The paper was titled “On the Maturation of Immigration Detention: Theories and Evidence.”

  • UNHCR Global Detention Strategy

    On 16 June, the GDP participated in UNHCR’s strategy meeting with civil society partners marking the launch of its new global strategy on detention.

  • Expert consultation

    On 13 June, the GDP’s Mariette Grange participated in an Expert Consultation held at the Office of the High Commissioner for Human on a new Global Study on Children Deprived of Liberty.

  • Public debate on Greece

    On 20 March, Izabella Majcher participated in a public debate on the situation of migrants in Greece that was held at the European Parliament. The event was organised by PICUM in cooperation with Amnesty International, the European Network of Migrant Women, EAPN, ENAR and Médecins du Monde. It was part of the project “Promoting EU Action to Address Criminalisation of and Violence Against Migrants in Greece,” funded by the Open Society Foundation.

  • New publication: GDP Working Paper

    How and Why Immigration Detention Crossed the Globe

    Global Detention Project Working Paper No. 8

    By Michael Flynn

    This GDP Working Paper provides an account of how key policies and practices related to immigration detention spread between various countries during the last three decades. Read paper.

  • Taz.lab

    On 12 April, Michael Flynn was a panelist at a workshop on the future of immigration in Europe that was part of the annual conference of the German newspaper Tageszeitung, the Taz.lab, held in Berlin. Other panelists included Marion Bayer of Welcome2Europe; Madjiguene Cissé, a founder of the “Sans Papier” movement in France; and Laura Maikowski of “Watch the Med.”

  • UN meeting on human rights indicators

    On 8-9 April, Mariette Grange was invited to participate in an Expert Meeting on Indicators on the Human Rights of Migrants hosted by the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights in Geneva. The meeting was organized in collaboration with the World Bank’s Global Knowledge Partnership on Migration and Development (KNOMAD), UNICEF, the ILO, and Migrant Forum in Asia.

  • Workshop on the criminalisation of migrants

    Michael Flynn was an invited guest at a workshop on the criminalisation of migrants that was co-hosted by the Centre for European Policy Studies and PICUM in Brussels on 17 March. The workshop was part of an EU-funded project on judicial issues in the European Union called Fiducia.

  • Workshop on the criminalisation of migrants

    On 17 March, Michael Flynn participated in a workshop on the “criminalisation” of migrants in Europe hosted by PICUM and the Centre for European Policy Studies in Brussels. The workshop was part of the EU-funded FIDUCIA project.

  • New publication

    Mugak, the magazine of the Centro de Estudios y Documentacion sobre Racismo y Xenophobia based in San Sebastian, Spain, published an article by Mariette Grange in its recent edition about “alternatives to detention,” titled “Alternativas al Internamiento de Inmigrantes en Situacion Irregular.” It is available here.

  • Interview

    On 23 February, Australian Public Broadcasting’s Sunday Extra aired an interview with Michael Flynn discussing how Australia’s detention practices stack up to those of other countries.

  • Publication

    On 11 February, the website “Crimmigration” published an article by Izabella Majcher titled “Crimmigration in the European Union: The Case of Immigration Detention.” It is available here.

  • Interview

    On 31 January, Michael Flynn was interviewed on Canada’s CKNW radio about challenges to accessing information about detention centers. The interview is available here.
     

  • New publication

    In its January/February 2014 issue, The New Internationalist published a brief contribution by Michael Flynn addressing some of the challenges facing the “alternatives to detention” campaign. 

  • Submission to the European Commission

    Submission for the European Commission’s Home Affairs Public Consultation “Debate on the future of Home Affairs policies: An open and safe Europe – what next?” Available here.

  • Submission to the UN Working Group on Arbitrary Detention

    Submission to the UN Working Group on Arbitrary Detention in response to the Questionnaire related to the “Draft Basic Principles and Guidelines on Remedies and Procedures on the Right of Anyone Deprived of His or Her Liberty by Arrest or Detention to Bring Proceedings Before Court.” Available here.

  • Debate

    In January 2014, Michelle Brane of the Women’s Refugee Commission and Michael Flynn of the Global Detention Project held an online debate about the impact of advocacy strategies on immigration detention, which was published on the website of the New Internationalist. It is available here.

  • New publication

    Oxford Monitor of Forced Migration recently published a journal article by Izabella Majcher on detention provisions under the EU Returns Directive. The article, titled “The European Union Returns Directive: Does It Prevent Arbitrary Detention?” is available here.

  • EU policy conference

    On 9-10 December 2013, the GDP’s Izabella Majcher and Michael Flynn gave presentations on trends and challenges regarding immigration detention laws and practices at “Migration Policy Conference: Stockholm and Beyond,” organized by the Dutch Ministry of Security and Justice in the Hague.The GDP’s presentations focused on continuing problems with transparency in the EU with respect to detention practices and information, gaps in procedural guarantees provided immigration detainees in EU law, and the need for EU states to re-assess whether detention is an effective tool for achieving the larger objectives set out in EU migration policy.

  • Migreurop workshop

    On 6 December, the GDP participated in a workshop in Paris organized by the EU-wide NGO Migreurop. The GDP gave a presentation on challenges to developing reliable data on detention centres.

  • New publication

    On 4 December, “Border Criminologies” based at Oxford’s Centre for Criminology published a perspective piece by Michael Flynn on “alternatives to detention.” It is available here.

  • Keynote presentation at Council of Europe

    On 21 November, Michael Flynn gave the keynote address at the Council of Europe ‘s two-day conference on “Immigration Detention in Europe: Establishing Common Concerns and Developing Minimum standards,” which was co-hosted by the UK’s HM Directorate of Prisons and the Council of Europe’s Parliamentary Assembly. Flynn’s presentation, titled “Immigration Detention in Europe: Transparency, Effectiveness, Awareness,” is available here.

  • International Detention Coalition

    In late 2013, the GDP gave a series of presentations on working with rights advocates to develop data on detention regimes at regional meetings of the International Detention Coalition in Amman, Jordan (19-21 November); Bangkok, Thailand (7-9 November); and Guatemala City (11-12 September).

  • New publication

    On 4 November, Border Criminologies published a GDP review of its recent working papers titled “Immigration, Human Rights, and Language.” It is available here.

  • New publication: GDP Working Paper

    Smoke Screens: Is There a Correlation between Migration Euphemisms and the Language of Detention?

    Global Detention Project Working Paper No. 5

    By Mariette Grange

    Discursive strategies used to describe people moving across borders can have consequences on their well-being, including limiting their access to legal procedures. This Global Detention Project working paper points to an apparent paradox in these strategies: While language used to describe migrants and asylum-seekers is often euphemistic (or dysphemistic), tending to dehumanise them, language used to characterize their treatment in custody appears aimed at shielding detention from scrutiny. The paper suggests that in the field of immigration detention, the role and impact of misleading language on policy and perception appears to be quite significant and merits more attention from scholars and advocates. Read paper.

  • New publication: GDP Working Paper

    “Crimmigration” in the European Union through the Lens of Immigration Detention

    Global Detention Project Working Paper No. 6

    By Izabella Majcher

    The phenomenon of “crimmigration”—or the convergence of criminal and immigration laws—appears to have a harmful impact on migrants, ranging from increasing negative attitudes about non-citizens to more restrictive immigration policies. This Global Detention Project working paper argues that immigration detention regulated by European Union (EU) directives represents a peculiar manifestation of crimmigration. In particular, detention provisions laid down in the Returns Directive and the recently revised Reception Conditions Directive selectively incorporate criminal justice objectives while rejecting protective features that are provided in criminal processes. Thus, while immigration detention sanctioned by EU directives may pursue objectives similar to those of criminal justice—retribution, deterrence, or incapacitation—detainees are not entitled to due process guarantees afforded to their criminal counterparts. This paper argues that in cases where formally administrative immigration detention is punitive in practice, detainees should be granted broader procedural protections, including presumption in favour of non-custodial alternatives to detention, automatic review of detention, personal hearings, and legal and linguistic assistance. Read paper.

  • New publication: GDP Working Paper

    The Hidden Costs of Human Rights: The Case of Immigration Detention

    Global Detention Project Working Paper No. 7

    By Michael Flynn

    Many liberal democracies betray a noticeable discomfort when it comes to public scrutiny of immigration detention, neglecting to release comprehensive statistics about it, cloaking detention practices in misleading names and phrases, and carefully choosing which activities they define as deprivation of liberty. On the other hand, these same countries have laboured to expand their detention activities and to encourage their neighbours to do the same. What explains this simultaneous reticence towards and embrace of immigration detention? This Global Detention Project working paper argues that a largely unrecognized variable influencing the evolution of immigration detention has been the promotion of some key human rights norms, which has helped spur states to adopt new institutions dedicated to this practice while at the same time prompting them to shift the burden of global migration to countries on the periphery of the international system. Read paper.

  • New publication: GDP Working Paper

    The Hidden Costs of Human Rights: The Case of Immigration Detention

    Global Detention Project Working Paper No. 7

    By Michael Flynn

    Many liberal democracies betray a noticeable discomfort when it comes to public scrutiny of immigration detention, neglecting to release comprehensive statistics about it, cloaking detention practices in misleading names and phrases, and carefully choosing which activities they define as deprivation of liberty. On the other hand, these same countries have laboured to expand their detention activities and to encourage their neighbours to do the same. What explains this simultaneous reticence towards and embrace of immigration detention? This Global Detention Project working paper argues that a largely unrecognized variable influencing the evolution of immigration detention has been the promotion of some key human rights norms, which has helped spur states to adopt new institutions dedicated to this practice while at the same time prompting them to shift the burden of global migration to countries on the periphery of the international system. Read paper.

  • New publication

    In September, Oxford’s Forced Migration Review published a special issue on the topic of immigration detention. The issue includes an article by Michael Flynn, Manager of the Global Detention Project. Flynn’s article, titled “Be Careful What You Wish For,” about the unintended impact of liberal norms on states’ treatment of irregular migrants and asylum seekers, is available here: www.fmreview.org/detention.

  • Presentation

    In September 2013 Izabella Majcher gave a presentation outlining the GDP’s efforts to build a comprehensive online database on immigration detention laws and practices at a regional workshop held in Guatemala City on “Alternativas a la detención migratoria y protección a grupos vulnerables,” which was co-organised by the International Detention Coalition (IDC) and Mexico based Sin Fronteras.

  • Presentation

    Mariette Grange, the GDP’s Senior Researcher, gave a presentation on “Global Trends in the Practice of Immigration Detention” at the Summer School on Human Rights, Migration and Globalization organized by the Irish Centre for Human Rights, School of Law, NUI Galway. 

  • Workshop

    In July Michael Flynn gave a workshop titled “Immigration Detention: A Global Phenomenon” at the Graduate Institute’s Summer Programme on International Affairs and Multilateral Governance, Geneva, Switzerland.

  • Conference paper

    In May Izabella Majcher presented a paper, titled “Illegality Regimes in EU Law: The Case of Immigration Detention,” at the conference “Illegality Regimes” organized by the VU University Amsterdam.

  • Conference paper

    In May Michael Flynn presented a paper at the annual conference of the Latin American Studies Association in Washington, D.C. The paper was titled “Detention across Borders: The Global Legacy of U.S. Immigration Interdiction Practices.”

  • Presentation

    In April Mariette Grange gave a  presentation on “alternatives to detention” at an international seminar on “Libertad de circulación – Alternativas al internamiento de inmigrantes en situación irregular” jointly organized by Mugak and the University of the Basque Country, Spain, at the Centro Carlos Santamaría Donostia-San Sebastian.

  • Committee on Migrant Workers

    On 22 April 2013, the UN Committee on the Protection of the Rights of All Migrant Workers and Members of their Families will hold in Geneva a “General Discussion” on the role of migration statistics for treaty reporting and migration policies. The Global Detention Project will present a briefing at the event titled “Migration Statistics through the Lens of Detention,” which will highlight challenges to developing statistical measures on immigration-related detention. A tentative event schedule is available here.

  • Initiative on Transparency

    In mid-March, Access Info Europe and the Global Detention Project launched a joint campaign aimed at improving transparency of immigration detention practices. The project entails using freedom of information laws to solicit specific information about detention practices from 33 key detaining countries. For more information, see this press release.

  • More Information and Evidence Needed on Immigration Detention

    Access Info Europe and The Global Detention Project Begin 33-Country Right to Information Investigation

    Geneva/Madrid – 14 March 2013 – Access Info Europe and the Global Detention Project have today submitted 66 information requests to 33 governments as part of an initiative aimed at improving transparency of immigration detention practices. The organisations have requested statistics regarding the numbers and types of detainees, as well as details about where people are detained for immigration-related reasons.

    Immigration detention is the deprivation of liberty of non-citizens for reason related to their residency status. It typically involves locking up asylum seekers and irregular immigrants until they can be deported or have their claims adjudicated. Migrants are frequently held on administrative – as opposed to criminal – grounds. Many national legal systems do not have clear rules for administrative detention and, as a result, detainees often face legal uncertainties, including lack of access to the outside world, limited possibilities of challenging detention through the courts, and absence of limitations on the duration of detention.

    “Immigration detention has become a key tool used by states to control migration,” commented Michael Flynn, founder of the Global Detention Project, which is based at the Graduate Institute’s Programme for the Study of Migration in Geneva. “Thus, it is critically important for civil society to be aware of where immigrants and asylum seekers are being detained and the conditions of their detention. However, governments often make it very difficult to get accurate and up-to-date information about detention.”

    The 33 countries in the information-gathering initiative include all 27 European Union states as well as Canada, Iceland, Norway, Russia, Switzerland, and the United States. All of these countries detain migrants as part of their immigration policies.

    Each country will receive two requests. The first request seeks information about immigration detention “infrastructure” – the names, locations and types of centres in which detainees are kept, as well as the number of migrants detained in each centre and how many of those are seeking asylum. The second seeks information on the numbers of accompanied and unaccompanied minors kept in detention for reasons related to immigration. 

    Objectives of this action include obtaining verifiable information from immigration destination countries so as to provide evidence for victims and human rights advocates, to inform public debate and policy, and to facilitate comparative study of detention regimes.

    “We have launched this initiative because we believe that transparency is more, not less, important when dealing with politically sensitive issues that involve the abuse of human rights,” stated Lydia Medland, Research and Campaigns Coordinator of Access Info Europe. “Immigration-related detention is of particular concern as it is resulting in widespread abuse of rights across Europe.”

    The initiative forms part of Access Info’s “Access for Rights” project under which it uses the right to information to push forward transparency on human rights issues. With the exception of Cyprus, Luxemburg, and Spain, all of the countries in the detention monitoring project have access to information laws and therefore have a legal obligation to respond to the requests. Apart from the detention data to be harvested from this project, we also expect to develop evidence indicating the degree of openness different states exhibit with respect to their detention practices.

  • Open Society Foundation

    The Global Detention Project recently received a generous grant from the Open Society Foundation to support our efforts to develop data and comparative analyses on detention regimes in three regions of the world: the Middle East, Southeast Asia, and Central America.

  • Conference presentation

    On 7 December, Michael Flynn, coordinator of the Global Detention Project, gave a paper at the 30th Anniversary Conference of the Refugee Studies Center of the University of Oxford. The paper was entitled “Liberty v. Security: How the Promotion of Fundamental Rights Can Encourage the Expansion of Immigration Detention.”

  • Workshop

    The Global Detention Project co-organized with the Mekong Migration Network a panel on immigration detention at the 9th Asia-Europe People’s Forum in Vientiane, Laos, which took place during 16-19 October. As part of the panel, Michael Flynn gave a presentation titled “Immigration Detention in Europe: Lessons for Asia.”

  • Public lecture

    On 27 September, Mariette Grange, senior researcher at the Global Detention Project, gave a presentation at a public forum at the University of Geneva called “Les migrations: une question de genre?” Her paper was titled “Quand la minorité impose sa loi à la majorité: paradoxes de la migration masculine dans les pays du Golfe Persique.” 

  •  GDP on NPR

    On 28 August, “Worldview,” a program on U.S. National Public Radio, aired an interview with Michael Flynn discussing trends in global immigration detention practices. The interview can be accessed here.

  • Odysseus Summer School

    During 2-13 July, Izabella Majcher, GDP’s research assistant, served as a coordinator of the 2012 edition of the Brussels-based “European Summer School: European Union Law and Policy on Immigration and Asylum,” organized by the Academic Network for Legal Studies on Immigration and Asylum in Europe.

     

  • Asylum Access

    On 29-30 June, the Global Detention Project and the Programme for the Study of Global Migration co-hosted a refugee rights leadership training workshop organized by Asylum Access and supported by the German Marshall Fund. The GDP’s Michael Flynn and Izabella Majcher attended the event and presented on the project’s efforts to develop strategies for constructing rigorous data and information on detention regimes around the globe.

  • Polish Humanitarian Action

    At the invitation of Polish Humanitarian Action, Michael Flynn gave a series of presentations in Poland on 20-23 June. The presentations, on the subject of “Immigration Detention and Children,” were given at the University of Warsaw, the University of Bialystok, and John Paul II Catholic University in Lublin.

  • Interview

    On 18 June 2012, the Polish magazine Przekrój published an interview with Michael Flynn. Journalist Klementyna Suchanow talked with Flynn on global trends in immigration detention and national policies related to the treatment of irregular migrants. The article can be accessed here.

  • Panel Discussion

    On 29 May, Mariette Grange, GDP’s senior researcher, took part in Dispelling Myths about Migration, a panel discussion aimed at challenging common misperceptions on migrants and migration, which was organized jointly by the International Organizations for Migration and the British Council. See this British Council website for more information.

  • New publication

    Immigration Detention in Canada: A Global Detention Project Special Report

    The Canadian Parliament is currently considering controversial “anti-smuggling” legislation which, if adopted, will “put a lot of emphasis on putting people behind bars before they get due process,” in the words of one member of Parliament. The legislation is part of a larger public debate in Canada regarding its social attitudes and legal responses to immigrants, asylum seekers, and refugees. This GDP special report aims to focus attention on one aspect of its immigration policy—detention—which could be significantly impacted by this debate. The report offers a comprehensive review of Canada’s immigration detention regime and attempts to situate its policies and practices in an international context to enable observers, policy makers, and engaged individuals—both in and outside Canada—to better observe how the country stacks up to its peers and the potential ramifications of its political decision-making.

  • Discussion Paper

    This GDP prepared the discussion paper titeld “On the Unintended Consequences of Human Rights Promotion on Immigration Detention” for the upcoming public roundtable organized by the Soros Foundation in New York City titled “Holding Patterns: Can Advocacy Efforts to Reform Migration Detention Inadvertently Lead to the Growth of Detention Regimes?” Details about this event are available here

  • Event

    On 8 March 2012, Dr. Dan Wilsher, author of Immigration Detention: Law, History, Politics (Cambridge University Press 2012), gave a lecture at the Graduate Institute titled “Detention of Immigrants: Enforcement, Non-compliance, and Punishment.” Video of the event is available here.

  • New publication

    Immigration Detention in Switzerland: A GDP Special Report 

    From its 2005 adoption of a controversial asylum measure—“one of the strictest pieces of legislation in Europe,” according to UNHCR—to its 2009 referendum banning the construction of minarets on mosques, Switzerland’s reaction to immigration has become increasingly antagonistic in recent years. Swiss detention and deporation practices have been duly impacted by this situation. This Global Detention Project special report provides a first-of-its-kind view of the Swiss immigration detention estate. When compared to detention facilities elsewhere in Europe, some Swiss detention sites—like its Frambois facility, located just outside Geneva—have decidedly good reputations for their humane conditions. On the other hand, many Swiss detention practices and policies have been heavily criticized. These include imposing detention regimes on administrative detainees that can be more punitive than those for criminal detainees; the excessive use of force during deportation proceedings, which has led to several deaths in the past decade; and the routine imposition of criminal sanctions for violations of the federal law on foreigners

  • New publication

    Immigration Detention and Proportionality

    Global Detention Project Working Paper No. 4

    Immigration detention is characterized by a tension between the prerogatives of sovereignty and the rights of non-citizens. While states have broad discretion over who is allowed to enter and reside within their borders, their decision to detain and deport is constrained by a number of widely accepted norms and principles. One of these is the principle of proportionality, which provides that any decision to deprive a person of his or her liberty must be proportionate to specific ends established in law. This Global Detention Project working paper employs the proportionality principle as a lens through which to assess the operations of detention centres, as well as overall detention regimes. In particular, the paper focuses on the intimate association between immigration detention and criminal incarceration and the institutional framework of detention estates, both of which raise a number questions about whether detention practices are proportionate to the administrative aims of immigration policy.

  • International Law and Migration-Related Detention: Coding State Adherence to Norms

    The Global Detention Project has recently been awarded funding from the Swiss Network for International Studies to undertake a two-year study assessing states’ adherence to international norms relevant to immigration detention. The study foresees establishing an online database that will combine details of detention regimes with information about each states’ legal and policy frameworks governing this type of detention. For more information, see: http://www.snis.ch/call-proposals-2010_244_chetail

  • Detention at the Borders of Europe

    In October, the Global Detention Project held a workshop with representatives of non-governmental organisations from 12 countries in Europe and neighbouring areas to highlight pressing issues in the region and develop techniques for improving documentation of immigration detention practices and policies. The workshop, which was held at the Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies in Geneva, was jointly organised with the International Detention Coalition and the Programme for the Study of Global Migration, and was made possible by the generous support of Zennstrom Philanthropies. The report on the workshop, titled “Detention at the Borders of Europe,” is available here:
    https://www.globaldetentionproject.org/publications/project-publications.html

  • Expert meeting

    On 12-13 July 2010, Michael Flynn, lead researcher of the Global Detention Project, participated in an Expert Group Meeting on the International Framework for Action to Implement the Migrant Smuggling Protocol hosted by the UN Office on Drugs and Crime in Vienna, Austria.  Read more.

  • Podcast

    Immigration Detention and the Aesthetics of Incarceration,” Presentation by the Global Detention Project, Oxford Immigration Detention Workshop, 28 June 2010. 

  • Public event

    Extraterritoriality: The Juridical, Spatial, and Political Condition of Refugee Camps and Other Extraterritorial Spaces,” 11 June 2010, co-hosted by the Global Detention Project/Programme for the Study of Global Migration, the Centre for Research Architecture, and Centre Europe – Tiers Monde. 

  • Workshop

    The “Oxford Immigration Detention Workshop,” held at University of Oxford on 21 May 2010, included a presentation by the Global Detention Project entitled “Immigration Detention and the Aesthetics of Incarceration.”

  • Presentation

    Michael Flynn gave a presentation on the  “The Global Detention Project” at the University of Texas at Austin on 19 April 2010.

  • Public event

    VIDEO: “The Politics of Privatised Immigration Detention”

    Presentation by Stephen Nathan, editor of Prison Privatisation Report International (University of Greenwich)

    https://www.globaldetentionproject.org/publications/newsletter/public-event-2-march-2010.html 

  • Presentation

    GDP researchers Michael Flynn and Cecilia Cannon presented the findings of their working paper, “The Privatization of Immigration Detention: Towards a Global View,” at the conference The International Prison Privatization Experience: A Transatlantic and Transpacific Dialogue, Texas Southern University, August 6-8, 2009.

  • Public event

    On 22 June, the Graduate Institute’s Program for the Study of Global Migration will hold a public event on the Global Detention Project’s new website, which was launched in early April. Speakers at the event will include Prof. David Sylvan, head of the Graduate Institute’s political science department; Jeff Crisp, head of policy development at UNHCR; Michael Flynn, the project’s lead researcher; and Cecilia Cannon, a project research assistant. 

  • New publication

    Lac Leviathan, a student magazine based in Geneva, published an article about the Global Detention Project. See: http://lacleviathan.blogspot.com/ 

  • Interview

    On 18 May Coop Radio in Vancouver, Canada, aired an interview with Michael Flynn, the Global Detention Project’s lead researcher, discussing the project’s work. The interview was done by the Canadian prison justice group Stark Raven. 

  • International Detention Coalition

    The International Detention Coalition, an advocacy organization based in Australia with partners in several dozen countries across the globe, promoted the activation of the GDP’s website in its May 2009 newsletter.

  • Open Democracy

    In early May, openDemocracy.net began promoting the GDP’s website through banner ads posted on its various web pages. See: http://www.opendemocracy.net/

  • Open Democracy

    In early May, openDemocracy.net began promoting the GDP’s website through banner ads posted on its various web pages. See: http://www.opendemocracy.net/

  • Working Group on Arbitrary Detention

    On 7 May, Michael Flynn, the GDP’s lead researcher, was invited to give a presentation of the GDP’s work to the UN Working Group on Arbitrary Detention.

  • Detention Watch Network

    In April, the U.S.-based Detention Watch Network ran a notice from the Global Detention Project on its listserv announcing the unveiling of the project’s website. The Detention Watch Network’s website can be accessed here: http://www.detentionwatchnetwork.org/

  • Geneva International Academic Network (GIAN)

    The Global Detention Project (GDP) begins operations after receiving a start-up grant from the GIAN academic foundation, which chose the initiative during its 2006 Call for Projects. Comprised of a team of students, academics, and practitioners based at the Graduate Institute in Geneva as well as at various international organizations and NGOs, the project proposed undertaking the first systematic global assessment of immigration-related detention policies and practices. Read here for more information.