Community Support Project
The severe harm caused by detention is well-documented. Detention is also unnecessary.
It is cheaper, more humane and more effective to uphold the liberty of migrants while their cases are progressing and to provide them with casework support in the community.
We need to see an expansion of alternatives to detention.
Since 2014, Detention Action has been running the Community Support Project (CSP), an alternative to detention pilot scheme that works with young men who have experienced or are at risk of long-term detention. The participants in the project are all aged 18-30 and have significant barriers to removal. They have each been detained for periods ranging from three months to four years, following the completion of prison sentences.
The project coordinator addresses the particular needs of each participant and creates a transition plan setting out the goals and actions that need to take place. This involves addressing the issues raised by participants and advocating on their behalf with a range of statutory and non-statutory bodies.
The CSP has shown that, when case management principles are followed, alternatives can work for even the most complex situations: people with previous convictions and barriers to removal.
- 93% of CSP participants have not re-offended since joining the project. This figure compares to the fact that around half of all people leaving prison reoffend within 12 months.
- 83% of CSP participants have successfully completed their time on the project.
“Feedback from the client on how effectively we are working with them is vital. This is built in to the structure of the support we give and the plan of action they write for themselves upon release.”
– Tony, Community Support Project Manager
“Really, it’s simple: when someone invests in you as human, you respect them. You respect what they say.”
– Jalloh, Community Support Project Participant