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Low Levels of Asylum Support Push Children into Poverty

Over 10,000 children seeking safety from war, violence and persecution with their families are being pushed into poverty by alarmingly low-levels of support, according to The Children’s Society.

Financial support for families seeking asylum in the UK has been frozen since April 2011. As a result, asylum seekers have faced a 7.5% cut in real terms as a result of rising costs for food, clothing, and other basic necessities over the past three years, The Children’s Society’s research shows.

Some families receiving asylum support are now living on little more than a third of the amount they would need just to escape poverty.

In April, the High Court ruled that the Home Secretary acted unlawfully when deciding levels of support. It gave the Government until 9th August to reassess rates so they meet asylum-seeking families’ essential living needs. However, the Home Office has now carried out its review and announced that the levels of support are to remain unchanged.

Charity Refugee Action, which brought the legal action, has expressed its disappointment with the outcome of the Government’s review.

“We are appalled by this decision. It will have a devastating impact on the dignity and wellbeing of thousands of individuals and families in our Government’s care,” commented Refugee Action Chief Executive Dave Garratt. “Refugee Action refuses to accept that this is a rational response to the judge’s ruling.”

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