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To: All Policy Makers, Sector Workers and Interested Groups

Tell the UK Government you do not want asylum seekers to get into further poverty

Tell the UK Government you do not want asylum seekers to get into further poverty

The current level of support to asylum seekers is inadequate and many rely on the support of voluntary agencies to help them get through the day. A 20% cut in asylum support to families and children will push people into further poverty.


I would like the UK Government to:
• abandon its plan to reduce asylum support to people seeking sanctuary
• help asylum seekers get a decent quality of life after persecution.

Why is this important?

People seeking sanctuary are now given a further push into poverty due to the Home Office’s decision to drastically reduce the weekly support payments made to asylum seekers.

Following a review of asylum support payments earlier this year, the Home Office has now taken the decision to provide every asylum seeker, adult or child, the total of £36.95 a week to cover what they refer to as the “essential living needs” of a person claiming asylum in the UK. This amounts to a 20% cut in support for each child.

Families with very young children will receive an additional £5 per week for children under the age of 1 and £3 for those age 1-3 years old. Similarly pregnant women will continue to receive an extra £3 per week and be able to apply for a maternity grant of £300.

Below are the different payments made currently and the impact from 10th August 2015

Single Parent and a child is £96.90 will be £73.90
Single Parent and 2 children is £149.86 will be £110.85
Couple and 1 child is £125.48 and will be £110.85
Couple and 2 children is £178.44 and will be 147.80

Given that many asylum seekers already experience destitution due to the low level of support provided, it seems inevitable that these cuts will have a huge impact on the quality of living for people seeking sanctuary. Many asylum seekers come to the UK with almost nothing. In addition asylum seekers are forbidden from working by the Home Office. The current level of support is already inadequate and many rely on the support of voluntary agencies to help them get through the day.

It is important to remember that asylum seekers have to rely on this £36.95 a week to feed, clothe and take care of themselves and their family, not forgetting travel costs for asylum appointments, solicitors, healthcare and other essential journeys.

The Home Office states that “full consideration has been given to the welfare of children”. However it is families with children who will experience the greatest impact of this reduction in support. At the Welsh Refugee Council, we see many asylum seekers coming through our doors for food and clothing vouchers including food and welfare supplies for their children.

Welsh Refugee Council Chief Executive, Salah Mohamed, says ‘These changes suggest the UK Government’s intention is to prolong the suffering of asylum seekers and make it more difficult to access their right to sanctuary and protection. This kind of treatment is unacceptable. The Welsh Refugee Council and other agencies in Wales calls upon all organisations working with asylum seekers to express their disapproval of these cuts by asking the government to abandon its plan to put people in further destitution and help families in the asylum process get a decent quality of life after fleeing conflict or persecution.’

How it will be delivered

Email and social media


Maps © Stamen; Data © OSM and contributors, ODbL


2015-07-30 15:09:38 +0100

100 signatures reached

2015-07-29 11:49:13 +0100

50 signatures reached

2015-07-29 07:41:51 +0100

25 signatures reached

2015-07-28 18:06:19 +0100

10 signatures reached