London: Government data reveals there were 9,381 grants of protection in 2020, compared with 19,408 the previous year – a drop of 52 per cent. The Home Office said the lower numbers were due to fewer initial decisions being made on asylum applications, as well as the pause to resettlement activity after the pandemic hit in March 2020. The figures show 7,546 people were granted asylum last year, down 40 per cent compared with 2019, and 823 refugees were granted protection through resettlement, 85 per cent fewer than in the previous year.
During the same period the number of asylum applications also decreased, down to 29,456 compared with 35,737 in 2019 – a drop of 18 per cent. There was also a considerable increase in the number of individuals in the asylum support system – most of whom will be in Home Office accommodation – with the total figure rising by 28 per cent in 2020, from 50,091 to 64,041. This is due to the pandemic causing the asylum decision process – which was already beset with delays – to slow down further, as well as a pause on individuals who have received decisions being moved out of accommodation, due to Covid safety restrictions.
Read more: May Bulman, Independent, https://is.gd/J4qiNh