"Lift the Ban" on Asylum Seekers Working

17 October 2018 - 11:45am
News

War on Want is a part of a coalition of organisations calling on the government to "Lift the Ban" on people seeking asylum working. 

Currently, people seeking asylum in the UK are effectively banned from working, which means they are dependent on asylum support whilst they wait for a decision on their asylum claim. People seeking asylum are given just £5.39 per day to meet all their essential living costs, including food, clothing, toiletries and transport and often the cost of their asylum application.

Forcing people to live in poverty for months, or even years at a time, while they seek safety from persecution is inhumane and has a detrimental impact on their physical and mental health. Enabling people to work provides them with the human dignity of being able to provide for themselves and their families, if they are able.

The Lift the Ban coalition is calling for the right to work for people seeking asylum, and their adult dependants, unconstrained by the shortage occupation list. 
 
Owen Espley, Labour Rights Camapigner at War on want said: 
 
"The UK should uphold it’s absolute duty to provide safe haven to those fleeing persecution and the horrors of war not condemning people seeking asylum to a life of poverty and social exclusion. People seeking asylum should be given the support they need to live a life of dignity and those who wish to should be granted the right to work.
 
“The workplace should not be a hostile environment for any worker. Restrictions on migrants’ rights at work inevitably lead to exploitation and create obstacles to workers accessing their basic rights. Only by protecting equal social and labour rights for all, regardless of immigration status, can we stop a race to the bottom where employers drive down working conditions for everyone. Immigration controls should never be allowed to undermine workers’ rights. “
 
War on Want is supporting the LIft the Ban coalition as part of its Stand With Migrant Workers campaign which is calling for: the right to work for all; equal social and labour protection; and an end to precarious contracts. 
 
War on Want believes:
  • Work is not a crime.
  • Every worker, regardless of their immigration status, should be able to claim their basic rights at work: labour rights enforcement bodies must be separated from immigration enforcement.
  • People seeking asylum should be given the right to work

Resources: 

Coalition Report: You can read the report from the "Lift the Ban" Coalition here.  

Briefing for Parliamentarians: Download a briefing for parliamentarians here

Coalition Website: Read more about the coalition's work here.

Take Action

Order War on Want's "Defend the Right to Work" action cards here.

If you want to take action on this issue locally, the coalition has produced this useful activism pack. Download it here.   
 
 

 

ASK YOUR MP TO END PRECARIOUS CONTRACTS

Help ensure the government guarantee basic rights at work for all workers.

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