Detailed Questions

5  Establishment of the Immigration Detention Facilities Visiting Committee

Q5-1
What is the Immigration Detention Facilities Visiting Committee? When will it be established?

A

The purpose of the visiting committee is to ensure openness of treatment and improvement of the operation of the facilities. The visiting committee intends to achieve the abovementioned purpose by presenting its opinion concerning the operation of the facilities to the directors of these facilities.

We are striving to improve the treatment through several systems, such as the system of the filing of complaints under the Ministerial Ordinance for the Treatment of Detainees. In addition, the Immigration Detention Facilities Visiting Committee is to be established. This is because the Penal Institution Visiting Committee and Detention Facilities Visiting Committee were recently established to inspect the correctional facilities and the detention facilities, and such a committee is also considered necessary for immigration detention facilities where persons are being detained in order to ensure transparency of operations, although the purpose and nature of detention in detention facilities related to the criminal procedures differs from that of immigration detention facilities.

The actual date of enforcement of this new system is July 1, 2010.

Q5-2
Who will be the committee members and in accordance with what kinds of procedures?

A

The purpose of the Immigration Detention Facilities Visiting Committee is for the members to express opinions that reflect the sound common sense of our society to the directors of the immigration detention facilities. It is important that the committee members do not originate from specific groups of professions or organizations, and that the selection procedure is not arbitrary. More specifically, taking into account the operational state of the Penal Institution Visiting Committee as a reference, it is considered that experts from a wide range of fields including academic experts, legal professionals, medical professionals, and relevant parties from international organizations should be invited to participate in the committee insofar as possible, and recommendations from public and private organizations will be obtained so that the selection procedure does not become arbitrary.