Home Office Research Report 78 presents the findings from the evaluation of the new family returns process, rolled out nationally on 1 March 2011, as a key component of the Government’s aim to end the detention of children for immigration purposes.
The research found that the new returns process provided a framework allowing families to take responsibility for their return. Lack of engagement meant that many did not take up this opportunity, and assisted and voluntary return rates did not increase (although they remained steady when the general trend was down). The new family returns process had a positive impact on family welfare and safeguarding children. Some areas for possible improvement were identified. The research also reported progress against the 20 child detention review commitments.