There was good news today for workers at the Dungavel Immigration Removal Centre as they learnt the government will not be contesting the decision by Renfrewshire Council to reject a planning application to build a new centre near Glasgow Airport. The Home Office has confirmed this means that Dungavel will remain open. The Dungavel centre was earmarked for closure once its contract expired at the end of 2017. It is not clear yet how long the contract will be extended.
With support from Community – the justice, custodial and immigration services trade union – workers had lobbied MSPs, MPs and the government to keep the Dungavel centre open.
John Park, Assistant General Secretary for Community, said:
“The fact the government will not be contesting the planning decision is testament to the campaigning efforts of our members and the quality of the public service that they deliver in providing a safe environment for detainees. We hope this will now bring an end to the uncertainty that has been hanging over our members for many months. We’d like to thank all those MPs and MSPs who intervened with the government on behalf of our members, in particular Alan Brown MP, who relayed the good news to us and who has listened to the concerns of our members throughout.
“There is still some work to do to confirm how long the Dungavel contract will be extended. We will continue to work with our members, the employer and politicians from all sides to provide certainty and job security for our members.”
The facility is run by custodial services provider Geo Group UK Ltd.
Community is the leading union in justice, custodial and immigration services.