Help us reunite separated families

by Bail for Immigration Detainees, an independent charity

Help us reunite separated families

by Bail for Immigration Detainees, an independent charity

No family should be separated by immigration detention, please help us reunite separated families. 

on 29th June 2016
pledged by 61 people

No family should be separated by immigration detention, please help us reunite separated families. 

Update: A massive 'thank you’ to everyone who has pledged to support our campaign and helped us reach our initial target of £5000. Our campaign doesn’t end here though. Our ultimate aim is to reach £25,000 – every £250 we raise over our initial target will help another family in need. That’s 100 families we can help if we make our stretch target. So, please do continue to share our campaign. Together we can help reunite families torn apart by immigration detention.

Our vision is that no family should be separated by immigration detention

Last year, we helped reunite 110 families who had been torn apart by immigration detention by providing vital legal advice to parents in detention, supporting them to apply for bail and to challenge their deportation.

These parents all have children in the UK, including babies and toddlers, for whom separation can be extremely distressing.

Now we need your help to continue this work. It costs an average of £250 to provide the legal advice and support to successfully reunite a family separated by detention and we rely entirely on charitable funding. 

In the next month, we need to raise £5000 so that we can help another 20 children to be reunited with their parents.

If you support our vision, please consider pledging to our campaign so we can continue this critical work.

Matt and Chris are two of the children we worked with last year:

Matt, a teenager reunited with his family because of our Separated Families project

Chris, a child reunited with his family because of our Separated Families project

The impact of separation

It is easy to see when a child becomes withdrawn or when their school work suffers. But only the child can really know the true horror of having a parent taken away and put in detention.

Even for older children, a parent’s detention is emotionally devastating. Many of the children we work with have lost weight, suffer from nightmares and insomnia.

No child should have to live through the trauma of being forcibly separated from their parent by the government.

Sadly the families we helped are just the tip of the iceberg – the government detains over 30,000 people every year, thousands of whom have families and children living here in the United Kingdom.

We want to be there for all families who need our advice, support and expertise, and that’s where our Separated Families project comes in.

We don’t think it is ever necessary to take away a person's liberty for the purposes of immigration control, especially if they have a young family.

Emma's story

Emma's partner, Ali, is from Afghanistan and has been living in the UK for 15 years. They met in 2002 and have been together since. They have four sons: Sam (13), David (9), and twins Joseph and James (4). The children are all British.

Ali was in prison, but instead of being released once he had served his time, he found himself transferred to an immigration detention centre while the government tried to deport him to Afghanistan, a country he had fled in fear of his life and had not set foot in for 15 years. Neither Ali, nor Emma or the children knew how long he would be kept locked up.

“Detention had a terrible impact on me and my family. It was very emotional, we were heartbroken. I didn’t know if Ali was going to be deported, it ripped the children apart.

BID represented Ali in his bail application and he was released. They then advised us that he should put in a fresh asylum claim because he was refused asylum in 2002. BID did this for us and they also represented him in his deportation appeal. BID made us very secure. At the court hearing, the barrister came and she was amazing. BID was great, actually better than any solicitor I have known.”

With your help we can reunite families separated by immigration detention like Emma’s, please pledge your support today.

Click here to read more about Emma’s story.

How we help

BID’s Separated Families project gives parents separated from their children the vital legal advice and support they need to apply for bail from detention and to challenge their deportation.

We are running this campaign to make sure that we can continue to help many more families like Emma and Ali's. We rely entirely on charitable funding, so by supporting BID, you can make a real difference to our work and help us make sure that no more families have their lives permanently damaged by the horrors of indefinite detention.

Together we can stop the separation of families by detention.

*Please note that names have been changed in order to protect the identity of our clients and their children

About the claimant

Bail for Immigration Detainees

BID is an independent charity that exists to challenge immigration detention.

We have a telephone helpline open four days a week and also provide legal advice and information sessions in detention centres and prisons to give detainees to tools to make their own applications for release.

We represent some of the most vulnerable individuals ourselves, including survivors of torture and trafficking, people with mental or physical health problems and parents separated from their children.

We also carry out research and use this and evidence from our legal casework to push for changes to detention policy and practice. Where we believe clients’ detention is unlawful we refer the cases to other lawyers, who work on a pro-bono basis, to mount unlawful detention challenges against the Home Office.

Fast facts

Last year:

  • 32,466 people entered immigration detention

  • We assisted 3,708 individuals including 179 parents with 397 children

  • We delivered 94 legal workshops or advice sessions

  • We successfully reunited 110 families

From research that we have carried out we found:

  • Parents were detained on average for 286 days

  • 23.4% parents were deported without their children

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Thank you from everyone at BID

Aug. 8, 2016

Thank you for helping to reunite separated families

Thank you for everyone who donated to our recent CrowdJustice campaign. Thanks to you we managed to exceed our initial target and raise £6160!

All the funds raised will go directly to our Separated Families’ Project, allowing us to provide advice and representation to those that need it the most. Last year, over 30,000 people were held in immigration detention in the UK. Many of those detainees have families here in the UK – being detained all too often wrenches fathers or mothers away from their children with a devastating effect on all involved.

It is thanks to your donation that we are able to provide our services, free of charge, to families separated by this abhorrent practice. BID doesn’t receive any government funding, so we really do appreciate your vital support.


June 29, 2016

We hit our first target!

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