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High Court hears case on the arrest, detention and removal of rough sleepers from the UK

27.11.2017 1240 XX

Last week, the High Court heard a judicial review regarding the Home Office policy to detain and remove EEA nationals from the UK after sleeping rough, because – according to highly controversial regulations – sleeping rough can constitute a breach of freedom of movement rules for EU nationals – even if they are working, paying taxes, or sleeping rough through circumstances beyond their control.

The judicial review claimants are among many European nationals who were sleeping rough and have subsequently been detained and either removed from the UK – with no evidence that a best interest assessment has been conducted – or released from detention without without their documentation including passports, thereby making it impossible to find accommodation or employment. 

Crisis has presented cases to the court that demonstrate homeless people have been detained and removed from the UK despite evidence of extreme vulnerability. In two cases, Crisis clients who have been caught up in this process have died. 

We have asked the Home Office to suspend this policy, as a matter of urgency. As such we will continue to follow this case closely and await the High Court's decision.