4 Aug 2015

In response to the Government’s proposals to remove support for families that have lost their asylum claim, Peter Grigg, Director of External Affairs at The Children’s Society said:

'Government plans to cut critical support for families denied asylum is a direct - and potentially devastating - assault on vulnerable children’s lives.

'Cutting the amount of time a family can get the vital support they need in order to live to just 28 days would mean putting children at risk of being made hungry and homeless.  
 
'These families are not allowed to work and are wholly dependent on this support. Many have fled violence, war and persecution and are often unable to leave the country immediately, as this may put their health or safety at serious risk.  Levels of support are already so low that families are struggling to provide for their children. Cutting it further will completely remove support for these very marginalised children.

'It is crucial that this consultation makes sure that these families and their children get support for as long as they need at a level on which children can get the basics necessary to survive.'

Ends

Media enquiries

For more information, please call Beth Herzfeld in The Children’s Society media team on 020 7841 4422, 07775 812 357 or email beth.herzfeld@childrenssociety.org.uk. For out-of-hours enquiries please call 07810 796 508.

Notes to editors

  • First report of the Independent Family Returns Panel highlighted that of the families that the Government had considered to have no right to be in the UK and should return, 41% (77 out of 186) were subsequently granted leave to remain in the UK.
    https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/257175/ifrp-report.pdf
  • There is no evidence to suggest that the levels of support provided by the Government act as a reason why these families come to the UK. For example, despite a fall in the level of asylum support since 2011 because rates were frozen, the number of asylum applications have increased during this period (https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/427906/asylum1-q1-2015-tabs.ods  See sheet AS01
  • The Children’s Society is a national charity that runs local projects, helping children and young people when they are at their most vulnerable, and have nowhere left to turn. We also campaign for changes to laws affecting children and young people, to stop the mistakes of the past being repeated in the future. Our supporters around the country fund our services, volunteer with us, and join our campaigns to show children and young people they are on their side.