In this article, Barrister Eleri Griffiths explores the reality for refugees who survive the UK asylum process, how to help them with housing, and dismantles misconceptions about why refugees are here.
Eleri Griffiths examines the situation facing refugees who have endured the UK asylum process only to find themselves facing homelessness and destitution in the UK, and discusses the options available to them.
The distressing plight of refugees fleeing conflict and persecution from around the globe feels closer to home than ever as immigration policy continues to dominate headlines and political debate. The international horror at photographs of a three-year-old washed up dead on a Turkish beach seems a distant memory as calls continue for the UK to pull up the drawbridge and intercept boats of migrants crossing the English Channel.
The causes of their plight are myriad, and the horrors faced by those desperate enough to brave whatever dangerous route they have chosen out of their home countries are sometimes unimaginable.
However, this hardship does not end once the perilous journey to the UK finishes, and even after being granted the right to stay, the situation can take a further dangerous turn as the threat of homelessness is the reality for many who have been granted asylum.
According to UK government statistics, 31,589 asylum applications were made in the year to March 2019. The UK offered protection to 17,304 people at the point of initial decision in the same period, of which 40% were children. Yet, the idea that at this point life becomes sheltered and protected for those refugees is misconceived. Read more