Thousands of asylum seekers with children will have to live on £73.90 a week from August as a result of cuts of up to 30% in their support payments, the UK Home Office has announced.
The cuts which would affect more than 27,800 destitute asylum seekers, were being made because the current payment system resulted in families with children in particular receiving “significantly more cash than is necessary” to meet their essential living needs.
The Refugee Council described the cuts as “utterly appalling” for families who were not allowed to work and said they would plunge children further into poverty: “We suspect the only place that families can live on this amount of money is in the imagination of government ministers,” the council’s policy officer, Judith Dennis, said. “It’s utterly appalling that the government has chosen to exacerbate the suffering of people who are already living in desperate situations.’
A single parent with two children claiming asylum fall from £149.86 a week to £110.85, for a couple with one child from £125.48 to £110.85, and for a couple with two children from £178.44 to £147.80. A single parent with one child will receive £73.90, down from £96.90.