Note the numbers here

People granted asylum in the UK are routinely driven immediately into homelessness and destitution because of Kafkaesque quirks in the system to deal with refugees, according to research conducted for the Guardian.

A survey of people granted asylum in 2016 and 2017 has revealed the devastating impact of homelessness among those who often believe gaining refugee status will be the end of their troubles. Instead, they often say the period after being granted protection produced even worse difficulties.

“The way the system works at the moment, homelessness and destitution are an inevitable consequence for many newly recognised refugees – and it’s completely avoidable,” said Lisa Doyle, director of advocacy at the Refugee Council.

The research, conducted by the Refugee Council for the Guardian, involved in-depth interviews with 54 people who had been granted asylum in 2016 or 2017 and had later sought help from the Refugee Council.

The interviews showed that sleeping rough and sofa-surfing were common experiences. Many people encountered such significant delays in opening bank accounts or obtaining the documents they needed to apply for work, housing or benefits that they were forced to sleep rough and plead for support from friends and charities.

Of the respondents to the survey, more than half (31) slept rough or in a hostel or night shelter in the period after gaining refugee status. Interviewees said housing insecurity was a cause of great anxiety, with one person saying he attempted suicide multiple times.

So, more than half slept rough. Quite terrible, of course.

Now think through how this survey has been done.

They started only with the people who had had a bad enough experience that they sought help from this one particular organisation.

What we actually want to know is what is the prevalence of these sorts of problems across all of those granted refugee status:

This is roughly two-thirds of the 13,468 people who were granted asylum or other protection visas in 2016.

It’s actually 31 of 13,468, or 0.2%.

No, of course, that’s not the real number either but that’s the number that we can prove. And those of us rich in maturity do tend to think that a 0.2% government fuck up rate is pretty low for the British State.

10 thoughts on “Note the numbers here”

  1. “Instead, they often say the period after being granted protection produced even worse difficulties.”

    Look, I’m *very* pro-immigration and open-borders and all that BUT, if getting asylum in the UK is *worse* than what you left, then maybe things weren’t so bad that you’d needed to seek (or be granted) asylum in the first place.

  2. You can’t assume from the text that the 54 people interviewed were *all* of the people who sought help from the refugee council, or all of the people who needed help and sought help from other organisations, or all of the people who needed help but were not equipped to navigate the bureaucracy to ask for it in a way that got recorded in the statistics. It’s much more natural to read it as “Lots of people sought help, and we interviewed 54 of them in depth to try to uncover the root causes”.

    The article says itself that they can’t be extrapolated directly, but the people involved in the work out to be the ones in a position to make a good guess. For a actual numbers, the following paragraph:

    “In the first half of 2017, the British Red Cross supported 1,900 refugees who were destitute or homeless. ”

    is aready lot more than 31.

    People I used to work for are involved with http://www.refugeesathome.org/ and they have placed more than 700 refugees for more than 40,000 person/nights in total since October 2015.

    I don’t think it’s unreasonable to conclude that there’s a systemic problem?

  3. Sure there’s a systemic problem. Look at the food banks. The British government is, always has been and presumably always will be shit at dealing with such problems.

  4. It’s deliberate policy to make such a SNAFU that migrants are deterred. Message hasn’t got through yet.

  5. Don’t any of these Guardianistas have agreeable second homes in France? There are tent villages in several Paris squares as well as the infamous ‘jungles’. I’ve not seen anything remotely comparable in the UK.

  6. If you have escaped from being tortured and murdered –and that is what asylum should mean–then a bit of homelessness is likely very much the lesser of two evils. Esp as it rises from state bungling rather than deliberate malice.

  7. From the Red Cross web-site:
    Destitute refugees and asylum seekers were supported at 50 sites across the UK, with the Red Cross seeing people most frequently in London, Leicester and Glasgow.

    Nearly 1,500 people were given food parcels while 188 people were provided with baby packs.

    Just over one in five (22 per cent) of those seen had been recognised as refugees, and thus have a legal right to live and work in the UK.

    Around 42 per cent were asylum seekers awaiting a decision on their initial application for international protection.

    Does that mean around 36% of support from the BRC is going towards people who are breaking the law after making an asylum claim that is bogus ( in the HO’s view ), or not bothering to register a claim at all.
    The British are indeed very generous. Maybe that’s why they come.
    Unless my arithmetic is wrong again.

  8. Bloke in North Dorset

    “The research, conducted by the Refugee Council for the Guardian, …”

    If that has been something like:

    “The [global warming] research, conducted by ExxonMobil …” the G would have been apoplectic and there’d have been endless articles denouncing the research based on it being by ExxonMobil and not the contents.

  9. ‘The way the system works at the moment, homelessness and destitution are an inevitable consequence for many newly recognised refugees’

    Refugees have a right to food, shelter, and medical care until they can return to their homeland. ‘homelessness and destitution should’ be the inevitable consequence for ALL refugees. They are REFUGEES, for christsake!

  10. Many people encountered such significant delays in opening bank accounts or obtaining the documents they needed to apply for work, housing or benefits that they were forced to sleep rough and plead for support from friends and charities.

    Perhaps less State regulation on opening bank accounts, fewer documents required for working and more State efficiency supplying said documents is necessary?

    For the millionth time, the Guardian scratches its head over why the enormous State it has demanded is so shit at doing things.

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