In a letter dated 25 January 2010 from Lin Homer, UKBA Chief Executive, to Donna Covey, Chief Executive of the Refugee Council and co-chair of the National Asylum Stakeholder Forum, the government has announced its current intention to opt out of the latest European Commission proposals recasting the EU Procedures and Qualification Directives. The UKBA is particularly concerned that the proposed new Procedures Directive would prevent operation of the current detained fast-track system and place restrictions on their ability to make appeals non-suspensive. As to the proposed new Qualification Directive, UKBA is concerned about the effect of changes in approach to sufficiency of protection and internal relocation and about the widening of the definition of family members. The UK will nonetheless continue to engage fully in the negotiations and could apply to take part in the Directives once they have been negotiated and if UKBA's concerns have by then been met.
UKBA has announced that, from 1 February 2010, it is not accepting any new applications under the Tier 4 student route of the points-based system at the following visa application centres: North India - New Delhi, Jalandhar and Chandigarh; Bangladesh - Dhaka, Sylhet and Chittagong; Nepal - Kathmandu, see
UKBA has announced that from 22 February 2010, any student who applies by post or at a PEO, to study in the UK under Tier 4 of the points-based system must possess a confirmation of acceptance for studies (CAS) from their prospective sponsor. see
The Bishop of Ripon and Leeds, representing the Urban Bishop's Panel of the CofE has called for an end to the detention of the children of asylum seekers in the UK. see
See also in this context, the report from the Children's Society on the damage immigration detention causes to children's physical and mental health. see
In Patel & ors v ECO (Mumbai)  EWCA Civ 17 the CA considered the cases of the children of BOCs who themselves had been prevented from settling in the UK owing to discriminatory law prior to the coming into force of the Nationality, Immigration and Asylum Act 2002, s 12 entitling certain BOCs to be registered as British citizens from 30 April 2003. The CA held that if, by the time they were refused entry clearance, the adult children of those British citizens (former BOCs) were still part of their family life, the history of the discriminatory arrangements would be a potentially decisive factor in determining whether the children's Art 8 family life rights had been breached. see
In OM (Algeria) v SSHD  EWHC 65 (Admin) Mr Ockelton (sitting as a DJ of the HC) held that the claimant's detention pending deportation had been unlawful from March 2008 to January 2010 firstly because by maintaining detention without having regard to his continuing mental illness, the SSHD had failed to take account of the relevant operational guidance on immigration detention which provided that the mentally ill were amongst persons considered unsuitable for detention; secondly, as regards the period 1 March to 12 June 2009, the detention was unlawful because the SSHD's failure to recognise and declare the claimant's right of appeal, against refusal to revoke the deportation order in light of the CA judgment in BA (Nigeria), was a failure to act with reasonable diligence and expedition to effect removal. see
On Monday 15 February from 10:00 to 17:00 hours, at Garden Court Chambers, 57-60 Lincolns Inn Fields, HJT Training hold a conference "Shedding the Single Tier: The New Immigration Appeals System 2010". Speakers include Mark Ockelton, Deputy President of the Asylum and Immigration Tribunal. see