Sometimes moving is not a choice. Sometimes people are forced to move just to stay alive, safe or free.

As a global power and as the fifth richest country in the world, we benefit from international rules, promises and obligations. This includes our obligation to lead by example and to guarantee shelter and safe passage to those who seek asylum or refuge from conflict, persecution and crisis.

We can and should build a system where asylum decisions are made quickly and fairly, so that people can put down roots and rebuild their lives in the UK. We should also develop comprehensive support systems which help those who seek asylum to navigate life here and settle in as active members or their local communities.

£5.39 per day – that’s how much asylum seekers, banned from working, are expected to live on while waiting for a decision.

Our recommendations

  • Lift the ban: allow asylum seekers to work so that they can support themselves and their families and become active members of their communities
  • Keep families together: provide safe visa routes so that refugees, including children, can reunite in the UK with their families
  • Provide safe and adequate housing throughout the asylum process so that asylum seekers don’t end up homeless
  • Invest in ESOL teaching so that asylum seekers can learn or improve their English
  • Make swift, fair and lawful decisions so that people are not left in limbo for years or forced to navigate the complex appeals system
  • Create a culture in the Home Office of welcome and protection rather than one of disbelief. This includes training decision-makers to deal with complex cases involving trauma and abuse
  • Treat survivors of torture and abuse with care and respect the judgement of medical and psychological professionals when assessing these cases
  • Support those denied asylum who are unable to return home and ensure that they’re protected from destitution and exploitation

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