Asylum Seekers: Home Office Taking ‘Substantially Longer’ On Claims

Decisions on asylum applications are taking “substantially” longer than they were five years ago, data suggests. In 2014, 80% of applicants received an initial decision within six months, compared with around 25% now, according to the Migration Observatory. There is also an uneven distribution of claimants, with 150 councils failing to support any, while Glasgow has 4,000. The Home Office says it is committed to ensuring claims are considered without unnecessary delay. In 2019, it dropped its six-month target in order to prioritise cases involving vulnerable people and for those where initial decisions are reconsidered. The Migration Observatory, which is based at the University of Oxford, found that in the last quarter of 2018 an initial decision was made within six months in 25% of cases. In the second quarter of 2014, that figure was 80%. As of 30 June, this year, just under 32,000 people seeking asylum were awaiting an initial decision on their case, with just under 17,000 of these applicants waiting for more than six months. Earlier this year it emerged the government had dropped a target to deal with most asylum cases within six months. Now it’s becoming clear why: The target was consistently being missed and had become virtually meaningless.

Read more: BBC News,

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