STUART McDonald MP has picked up a special award for his fight for his fight against the “stain” of immigration detention.

Scottish Detainee Visitors, the Detention Forum, Detention Action, Glasgow Quakers, Justice & Peace Scotland and Global Justice Glasgow made him a “Detention Champion” yesterday.

The award was conferred for his “outstanding contribution” to the push for reforming the system that sees “unsuccessful” migrants and asylum seekers held in custodial facilities for indefinite periods.

Almost 30,000 are taken into custody every year across the UK over visa issues or when asylum bids are rejected, including at Dungavel in South Lanarkshire. The body of a Chinese man was discovered there in September, prompting calls for an inquiry.

Cumbernauld, Kilsyth and Kirkintilloch MP McDonald, the SNP spokesperson on immigration, asylum and border control, has called detention practices “a stain on our democracy and an affront to the rule of law”.

The UK is the only country in Europe without a time limit on detention and change is also backed by the Greens, Labour, LibDems and bodies like the British Medical Association.

The groups honouring McDonald said he was “at the forefront” of the drive for change. Detention Action’s Simon Hilditch said: “Stuart has been a leading light in pushing detention reform up the agenda and has been one of the strongest advocates for the introduction of a strict time limit. We’re delighted to be able to recognise his contribution today.”