Discussing LGBTQIA+ experiences of immigration detention

On 7 February it was time for the quarterly meetup for organisations, groups and projects that support LGBTQIA+ asylum seekers, migrants and refugees. Together with our wonderful member and co-organiser, Micro Rainbow, we welcomed nine different organisations to an evening of networking and discussing LGBTQIA+ experiences of immigration detention.

Dr. Laura Harvey walked us through some of the findings from her pilot study with our member Rainbow Migration, and answered many questions from attendees. The key takeaways from Dr. Harvey’s talk were among other:

  • Immigration detention remains extremely dangerous for LGBTQIA+ people and LGBTQIA+ people should not be detained.
  • The government must stop locking LGBTQIA+ people in detention centres where they face violence and abuse based on their sexual orientation and or gender identity.
  • Many LGBTQIA+ people held in immigration detention are scared to be their true selves in fear of abuse and violence, and many hide their true selves because of this. If you want to learn more you can read more about it here, and check out Rainbow Migration’s campaign No Pride in Detention.

Five people are facing a PowerPoint presentation projected to a wall.

We were also joined by Laila who told us about the Migrant Advice and Support Fund, which funds frontline organisations providing specialist advice and or holistic support to migrant Londoners (incl. asylum seekers, refugees, undocumented people and those with otherwise insecure immigration status). Please note that applications close 27 February.

This meetup is a supportive space wherein volunteers and staff in groups, projects and organisations who support LGBTQIA+ asylum seekers, migrants and refugees can connect, share challenges and build collaborations. If you are interested in joining our LGBTQIA+ migration meetups, feel welcome to email [email protected] to sign up on the mailing list, or keep an eye out on our Events page.

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