Embedded Home Office workers and Home Office advice to families

We kindly request that you provide the following information:

1. Please confirm what formal arrangements have been made permitting Home Office staff or immigration officers to be present at Local Authority Offices. Please provide copies of all documents in your possession relating to the presence of Home Office staff or immigration officers at Local Authority offices. This should, for the avoidance of doubt, include (but not be limited to) any Memorandum of Understanding, protocols, inter-departmental / inter-authority agreements.

There are no formal arrangements are in place.

2. Is immigration advice ever provided during the course of these meetings by the Home Office or the Local Authority staff ?

Local Authority staff do not offer immigration advice. If such advice was needed we recommend the person seeks advice from a law firm specialising in this area

3. If immigration advice is provided does the Local Authority monitor the accuracy of the advice given or the training of the Home Office staff member dispensing this advice ?

Please see our answer to question 2 above.

4. For the period between 1 November 2016 and 30 April 2017 (inclusive), please provide the following information:

a) How many families approached your authority for a needs assessment and / or support?

Devon County Council do not hold this information as we do not collect information which distinguishes referrals made by the family as opposed to be another person or agency

b) How many of these families:

i) Have children who are British nationals?
ii) Have children who are subject to immigration control?

iii) Have parents who are subject to immigration control?

Please see our answer to question 4 (a) above.

c) How many families were advised that the Home Office would be involved in the assessment?

We have no record of any Home Office involvement in assessment of families in Devon

d) By what method were they advised (eg, verbally, in writing)? Please provide copies of all documentation that explains the role of the Home Office to the (potential) service users. If the advice is provided verbally to the individuals, please confirm what verbal advice is given.

Please see our answer to question 4 (c) above

e) Of those advised that the Home Office would be involved in the assessment:

i) how many consented to the Home Office’s involvement? How many did not?

ii) Please confirm whether written consent is required from the individuals. If so, please provide copies of consent form pro formas which the individuals are to sign to record consent. If written consent is not required, please explain how the individuals’ consent is recorded, where it is recorded and who has access to such information as to consent.

iii) How many assessments were not completed due to the parents/carers refusing to cooperate further after this advice was given?

iv) Of those who did not consent, please confirm whether the assessment was completed. If not, in what number of cases was assistance still provided to the family?

v) If the assessment was not completed, what further steps were taken to ensure there were no safeguarding concerns for the child/ren involved?

In relation to all of these questions 4(e) please see our answer to question 4 (c) above