Asylum seekers are one of the most vulnerable groups in the world. This is recognised by States in their acceptance of refugees. For most, destitution is inherent in such vulnerability, as refugees are forced to abandon all vestiges of their lives when fleeing. Consequently, the UK is bound not only to accept, but also support destitute asylum seekers, providing a dignified and adequate standard of living. However, NGO research indicates that this standard is not being met as asylum seekers live in abject poverty, provided with support falling far below that afforded to citizens. This article aims to deconstruct the asylum support system, specifically regarding employment and financial provision. It will examine the social conditions and political justification for the system, aiming to address the balance between the UK's human rights obligations and the democratic desire to exclude and thus preserve the welfare state.
- asylum, welfare, employment, human rights, NASS support, solidarity