Work and costs of the Voluntary Returns Service

Response to this request is delayed. By law, Home Office should normally have responded promptly and by (details)

Reinhard Schweitzer

Dear Home Office,

I would be very grateful if you could provide me with the following information regarding the Voluntary Returns Service (VRS):

1. How many people have contacted the VRS (in each month/year since it was established in 2016) regarding the possibility of returning voluntarily to their country of citizenship?

2. How many of these contacts were identified as hoaxes?

3. Through which means was VRS contacted (telephone line, text, email, online form)?

4. How many of these individuals… (for each year from 2016)
a. …were rejected asylum seekers (Appeal Rights Exhausted)?
b. …were still in an ongoing asylum procedure ?
c. …had never claimed asylum?
d. …had never been in contact with the Home Office before?
e. …were part of a family unit?

5. What was the nationality/citizenship of these individuals (for each year since 2016)?

6. Which organisations and statutory bodies referred – how many – people to the VRS, in each year since it was established?

7. Which organisations receive or have received funding from the Home Office for providing information or advice, promoting or facilitating voluntary returns? (since January 2016)

8. How many of the individuals who contacted or were referred to VRS also made an application for:
a. Assisted Voluntary Return?
b. Non-assisted Voluntary Return?

9. How many of the applications made (each year from 2016) …
a. …were rejected by the Home Office?
b. …granted by the Home Office?
c. …granted and effectively led to a return?

10. How much money was spent (since January 2016) on assisting returns, including any re-integration assistance post return?

11. How much money was spent (since January 2016) on information campaigns, outreach activities and other activities of the VRS communications department?

Yours faithfully,
Reinhard Schweitzer

FOI Requests, Home Office

Dear Reinhard Schweitzer,

 

 

Thank you for contacting the Home Office with your request.

 

This has been assigned to a caseworker (case ref 56985). We will aim to
send you a full response by 22/01/2020 which is twenty working days from
the date we received your request.

 

If you have any questions then please do not hesitate to contact us.

 

 

Thank you,

 

N McKenzie

Home Office

 

 

 

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IE PQs, FOIs and Correspondence, Home Office

1 Attachment

Dear Mr Schweitzer.

 

Re: Your Freedom of Information request – 56985

 

Please find attached a response to your recent Freedom of Information Act
enquiry.

 

Kind regards

 

Home Office

Immigration Enforcement Secretariat.

Freedom of Information & Parliamentary Questions Team

Sandford House

West Midlands

 

 

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Reinhard Schweitzer

Dear IE PQs, FOIs and Correspondence,

Thank you very much for your timely reply to my request (case ref. 56985) concerning the work of the Voluntary Returns Service (VRS). Given that my original request was judged as exceeding the cost limit, I have done my best to refine my questions and simplify the level of information sought. I shall be grateful if you could provide me with the following information:

1. How many individuals have contacted the VRS and formally applied for voluntary return (during the last financial year for which data is available)?

2. How many of these individuals…
a. …were rejected asylum seekers (Appeal Rights Exhausted)?
b. …were still in an ongoing asylum procedure?

3. Which organisations have received funding from the Home Office for hosting immigration surgeries (during the most recent financial year)?

4. Which organisations have received funding from the Home Office for promoting or facilitating voluntary return (during the most recent financial year)?

5. How many of the applications made during the last financial year
a. …were rejected by the Home Office?
b. …were granted but did not (yet) lead to a return?

6. What was the overall cost of the VRS as a whole during the most recent financial year?

Yours faithfully,

Reinhard Schweitzer

FOI Requests, Home Office

Dear Reinhard Schweitzer,

Thank you for contacting the Home Office with your request.

This has been assigned to a caseworker (case ref 57493). We will aim to send you a full response by 24/02/2020 which is twenty working days from the date we received your request.

If you have any questions then please do not hesitate to contact us.

Thank you,

P. Zebedee
FOI Requests
Home Office

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IE PQs, FOIs and Correspondence, Home Office

1 Attachment

Dear Mr Schweitzer

Please find attached a response to your recent Freedom of Information Act enquiry.

Kind regards

Home Office
Immigration Enforcement Secretariat.
Freedom of Information & Parliamentary Questions Team
Sandford House
West Midlands

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Reinhard Schweitzer

Dear IE PQs, FOIs and Correspondence,

thanks for getting back to me, and I am certainly happy to clarify: In my question (no 6) regarding the costs of the VRS I was referring to the total annual cost of all VRS' staff and activities. This will include - as you mention - staffing, flight and escorting (return) costs, re-integration costs, and other ancillary costs such as payments to NGOs, etc., as well as any outreach activities. If it is possible to break this down, please do specify the cost of each of these elements seperately, wherever that is feasible. I am grateful for your effort and very much looking forward to receiving a full response to my request.

Yours sincerely,

Reinhard Schweitzer

FOI Requests, Home Office

Dear Reinhard Schweitzer,

Thank you for contacting the Home Office with your request.

This has been assigned to a caseworker (case ref 57901). We will aim to send you a full response by 20/03/2020 which is twenty working days from the date we received your request.

If you have any questions then please do not hesitate to contact us.

Thank you,

P. Zebedee
FOI Requests
Home Office

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IE PQs, FOIs and Correspondence, Home Office

1 Attachment

Dear Mr Schweitzer,

Please find attached a response to your recent Freedom of Information Act
enquiry.

 

Kind regards

 

Home Office

Immigration Enforcement Secretariat.

Freedom of Information & Parliamentary Questions Team

Sandford House

West Midlands

 

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