When did it become acceptable to use ‘commercial interest’ as an excuse to hide RAPE?

Theresa May.

Theresa May. Your new prime minister used to be responsible for conditions at Yarl’s Wood.

If the Home Office is refusing to reveal the number of people who have been raped while waiting for a judgement on an asylum claim, we can conclude that it has definitely happened at least once.

Once is far too often.

Responsibility can only lie with the organisation running the centre; whether the perpetrator was a detainee or a member of staff, Serco should have prevented it.

But the Home Office refuses to answer the question, for fear of harming Serco’s “commercial interests”.

That is not acceptable.

As Home Secretary while this has been going on, new prime minister Theresa May will be responsible, overall, for events at Yarl’s Wood.

If she couldn’t safeguard the detainees there, why should we believe she’ll care any better for the citizens of the UK?

Let’s have a straight answer from her.

Perhaps it is time our so-called ‘honeymoon period’ with this person came to an abrupt end.

The Home Office is refusing to reveal how many detainees have been sexually assaulted or raped inside Yarl’s Wood Immigration Removal Centre in Bedfordshire in case the information becoming public knowledge harms the “commercial interests” of private companies that are involved in running it.

Like all Government departments, the Home Office is subject to legislation that requires public bodies to disclose information that is in the public interest. However, since The Independent submitted a request for information about sexual violence against detainees in the centre in March, the Home Office has refused to disclose this information. A member of Home Office staff argued this was on the grounds that: “disclosure would, or would be likely to, prejudice the commercial interests” of people involved with running Yarl’s Wood.

The controversial detention centre holds women who have entered the UK seeking asylum, often while fleeing war or sexual violence in their home country. They are held while their immigration/ asylum status is established by the Home Office, before being given leave to remain or removed from the UK. It is operated by private company Serco on behalf of the Home Office.

Source: Home Office refuses to reveal whether women in Yarl’s Wood have been raped in case it ‘damages the commercial interests’ of companies | UK Politics | News | The Independent


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3 thoughts on “When did it become acceptable to use ‘commercial interest’ as an excuse to hide RAPE?

  1. jaguarjon

    I’ve just finished reading a long piece about G4S. “Commercial confidentiality” is used as a cloak for all manner of criminal acts from fraud to murder/manslaughter. The reason these outfits get away with such things has to do with the way in which their roots are entangled in so many spheres in so many nations. They are everywhere; in G4S’ case globally to the tune of $9 billion.
    The fact that they are profiteering using our, tax payers’, money should mean that we should have complete oversight but governments fear their power in the military and security fields. So we don’t look unless forced to do so by some especially egregious offence. Or a public scandal, like G4S’ Olympic scandal where it was a case insult to injury because our armed forces personnel, pushed into last minute intervention, were made redundant when the Games ended. This was said to be the result of cuts; which is true to the extent that some of their duties were taken over by…..G4S.

  2. mohandeer

    OMG. Rape cases are being kept under wraps because “commercial interests” might suffer?
    Do we have irrefutable proof that Theresa May is in fact a woman? The answer could prove to be enlightening, given some men’s attitude towards rape.
    Exactly what crimes are acceptable and can be dismissed where exposure might affect “commercial interests”.
    Crimes against humanity?
    War crimes?
    Guess I just answered my own question.

  3. Roy Beiley

    Why are male guards employed in the first place? Surely common sense would suggest that vulnerable women like these should be guarded only by female guards. And the HO should stop hiding behind spurious “commercial interests” reasons for nondisclosure if the info. I thought “transparency” was the promise the Govt gave us.

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