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A report commissioned by the Home Office evaluating the new family returns process has been published.
You can read the 91-page report here.
The report evaluates the conformity to process, welfare and safeguarding, preparation and barriers to return of families.
The new family returns process was rolled out nationally on 1 March 2011 following a pilot in the North West of England and London between June 2010 and March 2011.
The Home Office says it is a key component of the Government’s aim to end the detention of children for immigration purposes.
According to a press release, the evaluation report found that the new returns process provided a framework allowing families to take responsibility for their return. Lack of engagement meant that many did not take up this opportunity, and assisted and voluntary return rates did not increase (although they remained steady when the general trend was down).
The Home Office commissioned report says the new family returns process had a positive impact on family welfare and safeguarding children. Some areas for possible improvement were identified.
The evaluation also reported progress against the 20 child detention review commitments.