“‘Seeking Safety’ is a short film made with asylum seekers in Kent. They arrived in the UK as children but have been refused protection and the right to remain permanently in the UK. It shows them talking about their experience of living without a secure immigration status under threat of destitution, detention and deportation.
The film is in three parts. The first part shows a young man talking about his experience of living with uncertainty while he waits to find out if he will be allowed to stay in the UK. The second part shows views of Dover Immigration Removal Centre, now closed, and features the words – in subtitles only – of a young man who had been detained there. The final section shows a young man reporting to the Immigration Reporting Office at London Bridge. Reporting, or signing as many people call it, means that people without secure immigration status have to report to Immigration authorities at which time they can be detained and increasingly removed directly from the country. It is clearly a very stressful experience for asylum seekers who fear return to countries of origin.
All three of the young people in this film are still in the UK, one has received refugee status while the two others are still waiting.
‘Seeking Safety’ was directed by Jess Dadds. It was funded by Mind in Bexley and made with the help of Kent Refugee Action Network.