Anything you apply for, however, is always “no, no, no” and “rejected, rejected, rejected”.

The worst thing is the indefinite detention, which Home Office lies about. People are in here for 8-9 months. I have been here for almost 6 months. This is my third time in detention. Even prisoners know when they will be released. Here, if you don’t do anything, that’s a problem. If you do something, that becomes a problem as well. Time is taken away from our lives. I want to study and want to do my nursing. But I can’t do that. Months are taken away from us, we can’t get that back. It’s not fair.

We want to know, and we are going on the hunger strike. Something needs to be done about the detention system. I am paying a lot of money, just to be refused again and again. It is mentally draining. It needs to take shorter time to make decisions. [My] future is in their hands. I am trying to stay strong. I don’t want to end up on detention medicines. They affect you mentally as well.

Another problem is [how we need to] continue to find some help from outside. Home Office keeps lying, and they [detention centres] are sneaky. The main office will call us to come for something else, like healthcare. Next, the person is locked up for removal without their phone. Some people, when they are locked, don’t even know that the detention centre has your flight ticket. That is why we need to have each other’s numbers, and numbers of each other’s solicitors. We have to rely on other people’s help to communicate to the outside something is being done in here.

I want them to provide us a way to stay in the country. I came here when [I was] 18 years old. I learned how to be independent here. No more friends in —–. If I go back to —–, there is nobody there. If I have people there, I would be okay with going back. I would go back. But right now, I have my partner here. Friends here. Money here. Most people contributed to the country, and people are not on benefits. People worked and contributed. I don’t want the government money in any shape or form.

But applications are being refused by the case workers. What does a person have to do for her case to be considered? I want Home Office to reduce the requirement for the amount of time spent in the country. It’s like… they are not giving the opportunity. We should be given a chance to stay. In [my] situation, you need to do something to solve this problem. Look at the Windrush. What about the Commonwealth countries, then? People who spent 12-13 years in the UK, but do not ‘qualify’ to be the Windrush generation.

It’s like, I do understand that this happened many years ago. I do not want to have British citizenship, but a legal status to work. An option to regularise afterwards. Anything you apply for, however, is always “no, no, no” and “rejected, rejected, rejected”.

What about us? Everything is about the Windrush, and I understand that. But what about the detention system in general? We need to be focused on that as well. There are many people in the detention centres who need to regularise their status, who has been waiting for many years.

It really needs to be considered, because once we are released, it’s just a matter of time when we back here again. It is like a cycle. They take away our futures and lives and waste the tax payer’s money on this detention centres. We have loved ones to go back to. We don’t need to be locked up like criminals—even they know when they are being released. This place is mentally draining me. It is only a matter of time before I end up on depression medication. But I am trying to be strong.

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All my friends in here have gone

All my friends in here have gone, I’m into my sixth month in here and it’s getting so difficult for me, I don’t see people’s faces just shadows, I don’t want to get to know anyone else, it’s very difficult to care for people who are in such difficult circumstances, the same circumstances I am in myself, I get close to them and then they are either released or deported, I can’t do that anymore.

I can’t talk to anyone anymore, prisoners or officers, after what they did to my friend, I feel betrayed, it’s weird but I do.

Not only that, but the events of Wednesday evening are repeatedly playing on my mind, on top of everything else. I’m not sleeping very well at all, I’m actually having nightmares about the whole thing, I spent all night reading last night.

I’m glad that at least I can write as I think it helps me now more than ever.

I don’t know what I would be like without detained voices.

I can honestly say I have never felt so alone and hopeless in my life, but I have never felt such anger either.

We are still traumatised due to yesterday’s events, I can’t tell you how unsettling this is, I haven’t spoken to a single officer today and I don’t see how I can, I can’t even look them in the eyes, I just keep thinking “I wonder which one of you is going to put their hands on me” after what I saw last night I keep having flashbacks, I feel guilty like I should have done something more, it was very tense and I thought it was going to kick off at one point, we were crying shouting at the officers to let her go, and they were shouting in our faces and threatening us. I can’t get that image of her strapped like a Guantanamo inmate out of my mind.

I have never felt so vulnerable in my life and I have been in some shitty situations, I’m so anxious I can’t relax, it’s like I’m in the wolf’s den and I will get eaten eventually, I don’t know what is worse, the anticipation of the event or the event itself.

I can honestly say I have never felt so alone and hopeless in my life, but I have never felt such anger either.

I hope we can all stick together and stop this happening again, all detainees should stop being afraid, or use that fear to fight for their own and each other’s survival.

We have to make a stand for not just our rights but for what is right.

Unity and Solidarity is what will make the difference.

We have a new chant for our protest and it goes “I’M NOT GOING OUT LIKE THAT”

What I have just witnessed has shocked and angered me so deeply I don’t know where to begin.

After doing a peaceful sit in against the continued detention of torture, rape, gender violence trafficking and modern day slavery victims, we had to witness a brutal removal of an African lady. Her hands were not even cuffed but rather some sort of tape or zip tie was used to tie her hands behind her back.

I and many fellow detainees were shocked and outraged by this and indeed we began to fall into descent before finally composing ourselves as we do not wish to behave like the animals that are detaining us and removing us.

I heard Rupert Soames testify to the Home Affairs Committee that Serco are only concerned with our welfare in detention and try to remove Serco from the reality of removing a person, (LIES, LIES, LIES) well I can tell you those were all Serco Officers brutally removing the lady not Tascor, and a Serco officer just confirmed to me as I am writing this, “it’s part of the job”.

Who’s job is it to uphold decency, human rights and civil liberty.

We have a new chant for our protest and it goes “I’M NOT GOING OUT LIKE THAT”

So I will keep going, and try to stay strong, and I will not go gracefully, to exile.

I’m struggling to find reasons to keep going every morning as I have done for the past 5 months here on Yarl’s Wood.

So the demonstration yesterday was welcomed as it not only invigorated me a little but also showed many detainees that there are people out there who are aware of what is happening and are making a stand with us against this corrupt, immoral practice that is indefinite detention.

Some people were truly moved as I think we become so accustomed to the negativity and hostility of this entire process that you start to believe everyone and everything is against you. I know that’s how I feel, whether it’s healthcare, Home Office agents, or increasingly Serco staff, the environment is definitely getting more hostile for me, as I knew it might when we began our fight just over a month ago, but I honestly feel like I am fighting a losing battle already when it comes to my case personally.

I fight because I don’t have a choice, there is no alternative for me or indeed for so many people in here.

So I will keep going, and try to stay strong, and I will not go gracefully, to exile.

We in Yarl’s Wood are very grateful to the demonstrators who will attend the protest here today, we are holding a day of hunger to show solidarity with our supporters.

We in Yarl’s Wood are very grateful to the demonstrators who will attend the protest here today, we are holding a day of hunger to show solidarity with our supporters.

We believe we are wrongly imprisoned indefinitely, and we would like to first secure the release of the most vulnerable detainees, and those who have been detained beyond what is a reasonable time, whatever that may be, as there seems to be nothing reasonable when it comes to the Home Office procedure of detention.

It is difficult to keep our spirits up as this whole place is set up to systematically break you down in every way that a person can be, however the support we have received from such NGO’s as SOAS, SDS, Detained Voices, Women for Refugee Women, Medical Justice, BID, Black Women’s Rape Action Project, The L.G.B.T community as well as some MP’s has been very helpful not only practically but also emotionally and we thank you.

We will continue with our fight for freedom, basic human rights, and a fair due process until all the injustices we are subjected come to an end

Thank you

Yarl’s Wood strikers

I have become absolutely depressed and vulnerable now

I am ——– ——– from ———. I am one of the detainee in Yarl’s Wood IRC along with my husband. It has been almost 6 months that we have been detained. It is a very long time for someone to be detained but I can feel that my thoughts are not that important and valued as I am an immigrant.

I and my husband have done everything to stay in this country legally. We have paid taxes and spent our precious youth struggling in this country. My husband came to UK as a student, finished his degree, got post study work and work permit as well, but life had different plans and things did not go well. Our visa was curtailed as the license of the company who sponsored my husband was revoked.

These 6 months’ time period which I have spent and am still spending in Yarl’s Wood has made me a completely different person. I am not the bubbly, jolly, and full of life person which I was before. That person is lost in this detention centre. It has been long time since I have eaten properly. I don’t get any sleep at night. I have lost huge amount of weight, but my physical health and appearance is the least of my worries at the moment when compared to my mental state, which is getting worst day by day. I am extremely depressed and it’s getting more severe day by day. I get panic attacks and anxiety. I get scared of every footsteps passed by the door of our cell. If someone knocks on my door my heart begins to pound faster. Even if I am asleep all of a sudden I wake up being scared and my heart beats faster.

I am getting very emotional writing all this but I am hopeless now and have given up on everything so I had to write this. I need very serious help regarding my depression but I am not getting much help from healthcare here. I had to wait two weeks to get an appointment and finally when I got to see the health care assistant she told me that I have to go through long process until they decide whether I actually need medication or not. We don’t feel any genuine care and help from the health personnel, rather they treat us like whatever is happening to us is not genuine and we are pretending and faking it.

Even though our case is still on going for more than five months we are forced to stay in here. We are on the stage of asking permission of appeal to the upper tribunal in our case. We do believe that it will be granted and our case will go further. Just in case if it is refused we will go for the judicial review. This will not happen in one or two days. It will take some time for the process. In our refusal of the SOS bail 401 there was a reason that we do not have any close ties in this country where we can stay and comply with reporting condition which is not true at all. We have already mentioned in our bail application that we have our cousin who is a British citizen and live with her family, and a brother who is a member of British Army in this country who fully support us by any means. It was even mentioned in the refusal letter that there was no record of us having lodged a further PTA, however, we have an acknowledgement letter of the application of PTA which clearly proves that we did make the application within the time limit.

Even though I did not suffer from any medical condition in the past but after being isolated from the society, family and friends I am in a different position now. How can there be any medical evidence when I am not even being looked up properly by healthcare here in Yarl’s Wood.

Basically, I have given up on my fight and my life now. I feel like I don’t want to live on with this pain every second. Today is my birthday and it’s the first time in my life I am not excited about it. Nothing excites me, makes me feel good or smile anymore. I have become absolutely depressed and vulnerable now. I am suicidal and only think about ending my life to put a full stop on this everyday suffering, even though I try very hard to keep myself calm and composed and to stop thinking about harming myself.

I know if something wrong happens to me, it will not bother the Home Office as I, along with all other detainees, are just numbers for them rather than human beings. At times I do think about all my well-wishers, family and friends who love and care about me, but I am very tired now, and I am feeling that I do not have any desire to live like this.