Developing a measure of the quality of life in detention

Mary Bosworth, Blerina Kellezi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review


The Measure of the Quality of Life in Detention is a survey measure designed to gather self-reported information on demographic variables and detainee perceptions about aspects of life in detention and the progress of their immigration case, their mental health and their quality of life. This article sets out emerging findings from testing of the measure in the Yarl s Wood, Tinsley House and Brook House immigration removal centres between August 2010 and June 2011. For the research, 158 men and women from a range of countries completed the questionnaires (which took 45-60 minutes to complete). The article describes the survey and presents and discusses the main results. The survey findings suggested that there are 5 key dimensions to perceptions of quality of life in detention relating to depression, distress, isolation and the quality of relationships: humane treatment, staff decency, immigration trust, immigration procedural fairness, and health care. The authors consider the findings and their implications, and conclude that the measure offers an opportunity for investigation of issues and aspects of best practice in detention, and provides detainees with a forum to express their views.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)10 - 15
Number of pages6
JournalPrison Service Journal
Publication statusPublished - 2013

Cite this