Do refugees really have the life and style many people in UK think they demand and receive?

Updated: Nov 3, 2020

We are getting used to the news where yet again another boat has crossed the channel with immigrants seeking a better life. Depending on your point of view you might consider them to be an economic burden, after all they are only coming to UK to claim benefits right? Or like me and regard them as desperate, brave and I totally understand why they seek asylum in a country with opportunities. Yes, sure it is hard in UK especially at this time, many people are out of work.

But I would like you to consider the genuine refugees, who may be from war torn countries, or even desperately trying to feed their families. If I lived in fear of my life, or my family’s lives, if I had no support and literally nothing to feed my children, I would be on the first boat available! Wouldn’t you?

I mean, surely, it’s the system which fail these people, as the government choose to ignore that people are suffering and have literally no basic needs met. Shouldn’t they be helped?

Some people believe that if a county is comparatively wealthy, they can easily afford to accommodate refugees, of course there is a cost involved but, in my opinion, the financial aspect should be irrelevant when considering the humanitarian aspect. Do we not care? Are we not empathetic?

Article 14 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, states that, “Everyone has the right to seek and to enjoy in other countries asylum from persecution, let us call this the humanitarian stance”.

Universal Declaration of Human Rights | United Nations

I’ve worked with many asylum seekers over the years when I was a front-line social worker. Throughout my time some I did notice some people who were evidently trying to scam what they could get.

However, I would also get people desperate to work to provide for their family, but are refused work permits as their home office application for whatever reason either failed or they were still being assessed, by the home office. These people were often advised that they could stay in the UK but they would have no recourse to public funds and they could not work.

No Recourse for Public Funds (NRPF) | London Councils

This often-caused people to work illegally at menial jobs, well under the minimum wage; again, and they are often shunned by society for working. If this was the only way in which I could put a roof over my family’s head, and food in thier stomach’s I would do the same; Wouldn’t you?

In my role as a social worker, I often had to assess a mother and her children’s needs under using the guidance of ‘Section 17 of the Children’s Act 1979’. Local authorities only have a duty to the child within their geographical area. However, section 17 clearly states that’ ‘any service provided by a Local Authority may be provided for the family of a particular child in need or for any family member, if it is provided with a view to safeguarding or promoting the child’s welfare’.

So basically, this means that if a child is deemed in need, although the local authority, only has a duty to the child, the local authority is able to provide services to the family; if by doing so, safeguards or promotes the child’s welfare.

Many local authority managers I worked under advised in such cases that as we only had a responsibility to the child, then social workers should advise the parents of this and, we could take the child into care but could not offer the parents support.

Can you just imagine, being frightened and desperate for some help as you have nowhere to live or your children have no food, not familiar with the authorities and what they are capable of; then having the courage to ask for help the

n being told that they could only take their child into care.

I recognise that some unscrupulous fake

immigrants would happily leave their child in care as they understood the system and knew that when a child is accommodated and placed into foster care this gives them rights eventually as Children Services need to keep families together as a human right. Social Workers always know the genuine ones as they will not allow their children to be placed in foster care and would walk away holding their children often crying as we could only take care of their children.; even though the uncertainty and fear must have been horrendous. Don’t you think?

Please take time to watch this video which really says it all.

New Town Kings - Borderline (Official Video) - YouTube

If you or anyone you know is in this position, please get in touch and I will do my best to advise you.

Contact Debora Harry for more advice.

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