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Lord Williams of Mostyn: The particular issue on which the letter from Immigration Service Headquarters sought comments was the proposal in Chapter 12 to include a more extensive judicial element in the detention process. The introduction to that chapter refers to an earlier review of detention and the proposals contained in that chapter are, in part, a product of that review. The review was essentially an internal one by the Home Office; but, in the course of the review, the department canvassed the views of interest groups who had previously written to the Home Office about the subject.
The letter of 12 August was sent to those organisations who had been involved in this earlier review. It updated them on the Government's thinking on the specific issue of expanding the judicial element in the detention process and invited their further thoughts. It was not intended to, and did not, alter the deadline for comments on the White Paper and all comments received on this--or any other aspect of the White Paper--by 30 October will be considered and taken into account. However, given the tight timetable for preparing draft legislation, it was helpful to have an early indication of the views of the main interest groups in order to inform the development of our thinking, and we are grateful to those organisations which were able to respond.
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