High Court clarification on Immigration Detention for mentally ill
In the case of Anam, handed down last week (19.10.2010), the High Court provided what may be short lived clarification on the policy of the government that it was only in "very exceptional circumstances" that it would be proper to detain those suffering from serious mental health problems in Immigration Detention while awaiting removal from the UK.
Anam v Secretary of State for the Home Department  EWCA Civ 1140 (SSHD powers of detention for mentally ill)
In deciding to detain Mr Anam the SSHD (Respondent) had "failed to take into account his own policy in relation to those who are mentally ill when deciding whether initially to detain the Appellant and then to keep him detained" . This policy is contained within Chapter 55.10 of the document entitled Enforcement Instructions and Guidance . The Appellant argued that because of the failure his detention was unlawful and the decision should be quashed.
The Court disagreed and held that the failure to take into account the policy did not make any difference because the only issue was whether it was unreasonable to detain him and he was such a high risk of absconding and reoffending that it was reasonable to do so. Other cases bearing on the same issue are due to be argued next month in the Supreme Court and their decision will be awaited with great interest.