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HOME  > Past issues  > 2020 October 28 - November 3  > JCP Yamazoe finds that foreign detainees temporarily released from detention center are banned from working
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2020 October 28 - November 3 [SOCIAL ISSUES]

JCP Yamazoe finds that foreign detainees temporarily released from detention center are banned from working

October 28, 2020
Japanese Communist Party Dietmember Yamazoe Taku on October 27 visited an immigration detention center in Ibaraki’s Ushiku City to investigate the human rights situation there.

The director of the Higashi-Nihon Immigration Center guided Yamazoe around the facility, including its monitoring rooms and consultation rooms. As of October 27, 102 people are detained in the immigration center. The director said that the center now holds less foreign nationals than before since approving more temporary release requests as a measure to prevent the spread of COVID-19 among the detainees.

The director admitted that officers at the facility put handcuffs on detainees and tie a rope around their waists when taking them to hospitals outside the detention center. By calling it a necessary measure to prevent escape, he justified treating detainees like criminals.

A 36-year-old male detainee whom Yamazoe talked with has been in custody for a year. He said that he is now fighting in court for the cancellation of a deportation order. The detainee told Yamazoe that he does not apply for a temporary release because detainees are banned from working while on temporary release. He added, “Many people I know here applied for a temporary release between August and October, but most of their applications were rejected”, which contradicts the center director’s explanation.

After the visit, Yamazoe said, “Prohibited from working, detainees will have financial difficulties even if freed temporarily as part of coronavirus countermeasures. It appears that the immigration authority irresponsibly relies on the goodwill of supporters who act as guarantors for detainees.” He stressed that he will demand drastic improvements in the situation in Diet deliberations.

Past related articles:
> JCP lawmakers talk with civil groups supporting immigrants and refugee status seekers [July 19, 2020]
> One in four foreign detainees placed in confinement for more than 18 months [May 30, 2019]
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