The facts about asylum
Asylum seekers and refugees do not get large handouts from the state
- Asylum seekers do not come to the UK to claim benefits. In fact, most know nothing about welfare benefits before they arrive and had no expectation that they would receive financial support.
(Refugee Council, , 2010)
- Most asylum seekers are living in poverty and experience poor health and hunger. Many families are not able to pay for the basics such as clothing, powdered milk and nappies.
(The Children's Society Briefing highlighting the gap between asylum support and mainstream benefits, 2012 Independent Asylum Commission citizens’ inquiry in The Independent, 2007)
- Almost all asylum seekers are not allowed to work and are forced to rely on state support – this can be as little as £5 a day to live on.
- Asylum seekers do not jump the queue for council housing and they cannot choose where they live. The accommodation allocated to them is not paid for by the local council. It is nearly always ‘hard to let’ properties, where other people do not want to live.
- Asylum seeking women who are destitute are vulnerable to violence in the UK. More than a fifth of the women accessing our therapeutic services had experienced sexual violence in this country. (Refugee Council, The experiences of refugee women in the UK, 2012)
- Asylum Seekers do not receive more benefits than pensioners in UK (UK Parliament briefing paper, 2012)