Change search
CiteExportLink to record
Permanent link

Direct link
Cite
Citation style
  • apa
  • ieee
  • modern-language-association-8th-edition
  • vancouver
  • Other style
More styles
Language
  • de-DE
  • en-GB
  • en-US
  • fi-FI
  • nn-NO
  • nn-NB
  • sv-SE
  • Other locale
More languages
Output format
  • html
  • text
  • asciidoc
  • rtf
Life in Immigration Detention Centers: An exploration of health of immigrant detainees in Sweden and three other EU member states
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Medicine and Pharmacy, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Women's and Children's Health, International Maternal and Child Health (IMCH). (International Maternal and Reproductive Health and Migration)
2016 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

Governments around the world use immigration detention to detain and deport irregular immigrants, which negatively affects their health. The aim of this thesis was to explore, describe and identify factors that could mitigate the effect of immigration detention on the health of detainees. This was a mixed method study using qualitative methods (Papers I and II), quantitative methods (Paper III) and descriptive case comparison (Paper IV) comparing the Swedish system to the system in the Benelux countries (Belgium, the Netherlands and Luxembourg). The study design was strengthened by triangulation of methods and data sources.

Detainees experienced lack of control over their own lives due to lack of information in a language they can understand, inadequate responses from detention staff and restrictions within detention centers further limiting their liberty. Duration of detention was negatively associated with satisfaction of services provided in detention and the detainees’ Quality of Life (QOL). Detainees had low QOL domain scores with the psychological domain having the lowest score (41.9/100). The most significant factor positively associated with the QOL of detainees was the support received from detention staff. A sense of fear was present among detainees and staff. Detainees’ fear was due to their inadequate interaction with authorities, perceiving it as threatening, and due to their worry of facing repercussions of being involved in incidents caused by others. The potential for physical threat from detainees created a sense of fear among the staff. The detention staff expressed the need for more support to manage their emotional dilemma and role conflict of being a civil servant, simultaneously enabling the deportation process while providing humane care to detainees as fellow human beings. Detention centers in the Benelux countries had more categories of staff providing different services to detainees. Compared to the Benelux countries, healthcare services at the Swedish detention centers were limited. Detainees were offered no medical screening on arrival and no regular access to mental healthcare professionals.

Detaining authorities have the obligation to safeguard the health of detainees. Challenges faced by the detention staff and detainees must be addressed to create a supportive environment and fulfill that obligation.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Uppsala: Acta Universitatis Upsaliensis, 2016. , 96 p.
Series
Digital Comprehensive Summaries of Uppsala Dissertations from the Faculty of Medicine, ISSN 1651-6206 ; 1176
Keyword [en]
Immigration detention, irregular migrants, asylum-seeker, detention staff, Quality of Life, migration and health, health promotion, European Union, Common European Asylum System, Sweden, Belgium, the Netherlands, Luxembourg
National Category
International Migration and Ethnic Relations Public Health, Global Health, Social Medicine and Epidemiology Health Care Service and Management, Health Policy and Services and Health Economy
Research subject
International Health
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-272493ISBN: 978-91-554-9468-1 (print)OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-272493DiVA: diva2:898632
Public defence
2016-04-21, Auditorium Minus, Museum Gustavianum, Akademigatan 3, Uppsala, 13:00 (English)
Opponent
Supervisors
Available from: 2016-02-29 Created: 2016-01-14 Last updated: 2016-02-29
List of papers
1. €œA prison with extra flavours : Experiences of immigrants in Swedish immigration detention centres
Open this publication in new window or tab >>€œA prison with extra flavours : Experiences of immigrants in Swedish immigration detention centres
2015 (English)In: International Journal of Migration, Health and Social Care, ISSN 1747-9894, E-ISSN 2042-8650, Vol. 11, no 2, 73-85 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
National Category
Public Health, Global Health, Social Medicine and Epidemiology International Migration and Ethnic Relations
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-267558 (URN)10.1108/IJMHSC-10-2014-0042 (DOI)
Available from: 2015-11-24 Created: 2015-11-24 Last updated: 2017-12-01Bibliographically approved
2. "It is a thin line to walk on": challenges of staff working at Swedish immigration detention centres
Open this publication in new window or tab >>"It is a thin line to walk on": challenges of staff working at Swedish immigration detention centres
2015 (English)In: International Journal of Qualitative Studies on Health and Well-being, ISSN 1748-2623, E-ISSN 1748-2631, Vol. 10, 25196- p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Detention of irregular migrants awaiting deportation is widely practiced in many countries and has been shown to have profound negative impact on health and well-being of detainees. Detention staff, an integral part of the detention environment, affect and are affected by detainees' health and well-being. The objective of the study was to explore experiences of staff working at Swedish immigration detention centres. Fifteen semi-structured interviews were conducted with staff in three Swedish detention centres and were analysed using thematic analysis. The results indicate that the main challenge for the staff was to manage the emotional dilemma entailed in working as migration officers and simultaneously fellow human beings whose task was to implement deportation decisions while being expected to provide humane service to detainees. They tried to manage their dilemma by balancing the two roles, but still found it challenging. Among the staff, there was a high perception of fear of physical threat from detainees that made detention a stressful environment. Limited interaction between the staff and detainees was a reason for this. There is thus a need to support detention staff to improve their interaction with detainees in order to decrease their fear, manage their emotional dilemma, and provide better service to detainees. It is important to address staff challenges in order to ensure better health and well-being for both staff and detainees.

National Category
Public Health, Global Health, Social Medicine and Epidemiology
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-251601 (URN)10.3402/qhw.v10.25196 (DOI)000352425900001 ()25833827 (PubMedID)
Available from: 2015-04-21 Created: 2015-04-21 Last updated: 2017-12-04Bibliographically approved
3. Quality of life among immigrants in Swedish immigration detention centres: a cross-sectional questionnaire study
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Quality of life among immigrants in Swedish immigration detention centres: a cross-sectional questionnaire study
2015 (English)In: Global Health Action, ISSN 1654-9716, E-ISSN 1654-9880, Vol. 8, 28321Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Background: Detention of immigrants negatively affects their health and well-being. Quality of life (QOL) is a broad concept incorporating the self-evaluation of one's own health and well-being that can provide an understanding of the health and well-being of immigrant detainees. The aim of this study was to estimate QOL among immigrant detainees in Sweden and to assess its relationship with the services provided in detention centres and with the duration of detention. Design: All immigrants in all five existing Swedish detention centres (N = 193) were invited to participate in the study (n = 127). In this cross-sectional study, QOL was measured using the WHOQOL-BREF questionnaire, which was administered by the first author. The questionnaire contained four additional questions measuring participants' satisfaction with the services provided in detention. Associations between QOL domain scores and service satisfaction scores were assessed using regression analysis. The Spearman's rank correlation coefficient was calculated to measure the degree of association between the duration of detention and QOL scores. Results: The mean QOL domain scores (out of 100) were 47.0, 57.5, 41.9, and 60.5 for the environmental, physical, psychological, and social domains, respectively. The level of support detainees received from detention staff was significantly positively associated with detainees' physical (beta adjusted 3.93, confidence interval [CI] 0.06-7.80) and psychological (beta(adjusted) 5.72, CI 1.77-9.66) domain scores. There was also significant positive association between detainees' satisfaction with the care they received from detention staff and the domain scores. The general health score in the WHOQOL-BREF was significantly associated with the detainees' ability to understand the Swedish or English languages. Although not statistically significant, a longer duration of detention was negatively correlated with QOL scores. Conclusion: Immigrant detainees report low QOL. Services provided at the centres, especially the support received from detention staff, is positively associated with their QOL. A review of detention guidelines addressing language barriers, staff training, and duration of detention is highly recommended.

Keyword
quality of life, QOL, immigration detention, immigrant detainee, refused asylum seekers, Sweden
National Category
Public Health, Global Health, Social Medicine and Epidemiology
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-260739 (URN)10.3402/gha.v8.28321 (DOI)000358181000001 ()26193898 (PubMedID)
Available from: 2015-08-24 Created: 2015-08-24 Last updated: 2017-12-04Bibliographically approved
4. Detainees, staff and healthcare services in immigration detention centers: A descriptive comparison of detention systems in Sweden and the Benelux countries
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Detainees, staff and healthcare services in immigration detention centers: A descriptive comparison of detention systems in Sweden and the Benelux countries
2016 (English)In: Global Health Action, ISSN 1654-9716, E-ISSN 1654-9880, Vol. 9, 30358Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Background:

Immigration detention has been shown to negatively affect the health and well-being of detainees. The aim of the study was to describe and compare policies and practices that could affect the health and well-being of immigrant detainees in the Benelux countries (Belgium, the Netherlands, and Luxembourg) to those in Sweden.

Design:

This was a case study. Data were collected in two phases using a questionnaire developed particularly for this study. In the first phase, authorities in the Benelux countries responded to the questionnaire via email. During the second phase, a research team visited detention centres in the Benelux countries to observe and further explore, strengthening findings through triangulation. Data on Swedish detention centres were collected in previous studies.

Results:

Compared to the Benelux countries, Sweden has limited health care provision available in the detention centres. Swedish detention centres did not have mental health care professionals working at the centres and had fewer restrictions within the centres with regard to access to mobile phone, internet, and various recreational activities. Compared to Sweden, the detention centres in the Benelux countries have more staff categories providing services to the detainees that are provided with relevant and timely on-the-job training. All the countries, except Belgium, provide subsistence allowances to detainees.

Conclusion:

Despite the Common European Asylum System framework, differences exist among the four European Union member states in providing services to immigrant detainees. This study highlights these differences, thereby providing a window on how these diverse approaches may serve as a learning tool for improving services offered to immigrant detainees. In Sweden, the health care available to detainees and training and recruitment of staff should be improved, while the Benelux countries should strive to reduce restrictions within detention centres.

Keyword
health care, detention staff, immigrant detainee, Common European Asylum System, European Union
National Category
International Migration and Ethnic Relations Health Care Service and Management, Health Policy and Services and Health Economy Public Health, Global Health, Social Medicine and Epidemiology
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-274971 (URN)10.3402/gha.v9.30358 (DOI)000376073700001 ()26950568 (PubMedID)
Available from: 2016-01-27 Created: 2016-01-27 Last updated: 2017-11-30Bibliographically approved

Open Access in DiVA

fulltext(1154 kB)452 downloads
File information
File name FULLTEXT01.pdfFile size 1154 kBChecksum SHA-512
6760bf0da7d4b2c70c93f9b9690d3b9a0fe2d4f13bfff049c9f4bcc18957900ead448b547e57a894b6430850446fc22a0edfaef18b0602e67785f7852b53b4de
Type fulltextMimetype application/pdf

Search in DiVA

By author/editor
Puthoopparambil, Soorej Jose
By organisation
International Maternal and Child Health (IMCH)
International Migration and Ethnic RelationsPublic Health, Global Health, Social Medicine and EpidemiologyHealth Care Service and Management, Health Policy and Services and Health Economy

Search outside of DiVA

GoogleGoogle Scholar
Total: 452 downloads
The number of downloads is the sum of all downloads of full texts. It may include eg previous versions that are now no longer available

isbn
urn-nbn

Altmetric score

isbn
urn-nbn
Total: 2699 hits
CiteExportLink to record
Permanent link

Direct link
Cite
Citation style
  • apa
  • ieee
  • modern-language-association-8th-edition
  • vancouver
  • Other style
More styles
Language
  • de-DE
  • en-GB
  • en-US
  • fi-FI
  • nn-NO
  • nn-NB
  • sv-SE
  • Other locale
More languages
Output format
  • html
  • text
  • asciidoc
  • rtf