There are 2 different type of officers here, some of them are really helpful and you feel that they are here to help detainees but some of them are opposite of first group. I don’t know why they are here they just walk around and they don’t help anyone, even if you ask them to send a fax to our solicitor they tell us “ok wait outside the office for a moment,” but that moment would be a long time like half an hour. Every day we have arguments with some officers in the meal queues. Sometimes those officers are really rude to us. For example one lady told my friend he hadn’t filled in his meal request form so he couldn’t have the meal he wanted. But I know he filled it in, because I helped him do it!
On the other hand there are some officers that they are very kind, helpful and friendly. They help detainees to find solicitors, they speak with detainees and ask them if they have any problems, they eat with us, watch TV and movies in the cinema with us. Especially the sports activity officers are really good, because when you ask for any help they help us even if it is out of their responsibility. They are not allowed to give DVDs to detainees but still they give us films or any sport activity we want!! Some of them are really good because they can understand our feelings and they help us with our sports like football, cricket and volleyball. They even play with us so detainees are happy with the sports officer.
There are different officers who take us to the domestic visitor area or the legal visitor offices. There is a big difference between them: domestic officers are really helpful and when I finish from a visit they take me back immediately to my Wing. But when we have a legal visitor we have to wait for a long time to come back to our wing; the officers hang around their office and after 40 or 50 minutes they take us back to the Wing. The legal visitor officers are not good when you tell them “please take me back to my wing and I need to fax my ticket or some documents to my solicitor” and they tell us ‘wait for 5 minutes’ then those minutes become hours. This is really difficult because if we have just got news about our case, we want to act quickly and send documents or fax something. Trust me, it’s not only me, other people are waiting as well, you know we wait in a very small room and there are a lot of people. Sometimes people are crying and screaming because they have just got bad news from their solicitor, and immigration are aware of all this.
Once when they were giving me a ticket back to Afghanistan I had to wait in the room for an hour and a half and I felt SO SAD. But they don’t care about detainees here.