Nearly 86,000 asylum claims in growing UK backlog

Nearly 86,000 asylum claims in growing UK backlog

Nearly 86,000 asylum applications remain outstanding more than six months after having been submitted to UK authorities, according to new figures.

The latest statistics from the Home Office show there are 85,917 outstanding cases, with the number of asylum decisions still below pre-pandemic levels.

In the year ending June 2022, a total of 12,968 people were granted refugee status following an asylum application; 859 were granted humanitarian protection; 235 were granted alternative forms of leave; and 1,622 were granted refugee status through resettlement schemes.

Of decisions made, more than three quarters (76 per cent) were to grant asylum or, in a small proportion of cases, grant permission to stay for some other reason.

Steve Valdez-Symonds, refugee and migrant rights director at Amnesty International UK, said: “The statistics released today​ once again expose Priti Patel’s leadership to be a disaster — her political posturing and cruel policies against people seeking asylum has simply broken the asylum system.

“The staggering increase of asylum claims still to be decided after more than six months has been created by the Home Secretary’s reckless refusal to process thousands of claims and failure to efficiently decide thousands more.

“The cost of this is astounding by any measure — the suffering of refugees abandoned in unsuitable accommodation, the unsafe journeys and profits of criminal gangs, or the cost to the taxpayer of sustaining rather than addressing all this.

“The government urgently needs to focus on making the UK asylum system more accessible​ and efficient — reducing not adding to delays, ensuring the quality of decision-making ​and providing safe alternatives to unsafe Channel crossings — so people receive the protection to which they are entitled​ as quickly as possible.”

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