Detention is dehumanising; it crushes our hearts and our dignity’

SET HER FREE campaign has been shared with us as by members of MK Fawcett Society Group at the recent Refugee Support networking and community event.

Many women asylum seekers have experience of rape, torture and trafficking. They are traumatised. The last thing they need is to be placed in a detention centre for long periods of time.

End Detention Now is a group of 22 women asylum seekers, all scarred by their experience of life in a detention centre. In partnership with the organisation Women for Refugee Women they are campaigning for the closure of Derwentside, a detention centre for women asylum seekers which was built in 2021.

A central part of the campaign is a focus on Mitie, the large company running Derwentside. Mitie also provides security, cleaning and other services to many well known brands and companies in the UK including some family friendly firms which claim to be inclusive and supportive of refugees and women.

On the campaign website you can find templates of letters to send to the CEOs of firms like Sainsbury’s, IKEA and Bravissimo. You can also request cards for posting or hand delivering with your own personal message. Information and the toolkit can be found here.

Milton Keynes Fawcett group is planning to write and deliver cards to outlets of these companies in Milton Keynes. If you would like to join us in supporting this campaign, please email

For further information about Mitie and for template emails for individual companies, you can also, visit the sites below.

See the main Set Her Free campaign website page here.