Refugee Council statement
“Good quality decisions need to be at the very heart of any asylum system if it is ever to be seen as credible,” said Nick Hardwick, Chief Executive of the Refugee Council in response to today’s publication of the White Paper on asylum, migration and citizenship.
“Getting a decision wrong could be a matter of life and death for people fleeing persecution. David Blunkett wants the system to command ‘trust and confidence’, but this white paper does not address the concerns we have repeatedly raised about the current unfairness in the decision-making process.
“There are number of widely-trailed measures that we welcome. However, we are bitterly disappointed that the bail safeguards, introduced by the 1999 Immigration and Asylum Act but never implemented, have been completely abandoned. This represents a kick in the teeth to commitments made in the past. We already have by far the worst record across Europe for locking up asylum seekers – people who have not committed a crime. The proposal to dramatically extend detention is profoundly wrong, especially when imposed on families and children,’ said Nick Hardwick.
The Refugee Council welcomes the confirmation that vouchers will be replaced by a cash system for asylum seekers.
Further information: The White Paper: Secure Borders, Safe Haven: Integration with Diversity in Modern Britain. You will need Adobe Acrobat software to download this document, which you can get free by clicking on the icon below.