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Into the Freedom

Project Promoter: Stowarzyszenie Interwencji Prawnej
Proposal: 1st thematic call
Co-financed from the program: 102 400,00 EUR
Partners: None
Duration time: 01.01.2022-30.09.2023

As part of the project, we are reaching out to people detained in Detention Centres for Foreigners, especially those who have experienced torture or other forms of violence, as well as people who have been wrongfully detained. We provide legal assistance or representation (including the cases brought to the European Court of Human Rights), and psychological consultations for people who require special support and compensation. In order to increase the effectiveness of our actions and reduce the suffering, we offer psychological assistance. People staying in Detention Centres for Foreigners are at risk of systemic violations of their right to individual freedom, fair procedures, respect for family and private life and freedom from torture or other inhuman or degrading treatment. Due to limited contact with the outside world, a language barrier or being unfamiliar with the regulations, such persons have few opportunities to obtain legal assistance. In 2020, district courts in Grójec and Kętrzyn supported all requests of the Border Guard to prolong the detention of foreigners. At the same time, in the court in Grójec only in 1.5% of cases a defence counsel was appointed ex officio (in Kętrzyn it was 0% of cases). The above mentioned data indicate a serious gap in the system of defending rights of people detained in Detention Centres for Foreigners. We want to provide legal assistance for 100 persons detained in two centres: in Lesznowola (a centre for men) and in Kętrzyn (a centre for women, families and unaccompanied minors). In 2020, 162 people stayed in Lesznowola (average length of stay was 94 days – the second longest in Poland) and 149 people stayed in Kętrzyn (average length of stay: 74 days). Our activities also have a broader social dimension. By disseminating the results of the project, we want to raise awareness about human rights violations in Detention Centres for Foreigners.