29 August 2021: StatusNow4All: Living Precariously or Health and Safety for All – a call for Indefinite Leave to Remain now
The asylum system is broken: there is a backlog of around 70,000 asylum applications which the newly arriving current Afghan applicants are expected to join. On 16 August 2021 the Home Office suspended its decision-making processes relating to asylum applications made by people from Afghanistan by withdrawing that country’s policy and guidance. It is a gross miscarriage of natural justice to suspend legal process for those waiting for decisions or appeal hearings or in detention when a simple decision could immediately be put into effect – a grant of Indefinite Leave to Remain.
This is why StatusNow4All calls for ALL those who do not have settled status to be given Leave to Remain. It is imperative for the Government to exercise its authority immediately by granting Indefinite Leave to Remain (ILR) and the right of access to Family Reunion as a matter of urgency to all people from Afghanistan who are currently in the UK. With political will, this can be done: nothing less than ILR will give people equitable access to healthcare, housing and food.
We note that, to some degree, this call echoes those made in parliament, also by legal advisors, and across the media where there is mention of an ‘amnesty’, or limited leave. We note that Immigration Rules 354-356 (Part 11A) allow for Temporary Leave to be given in certain circumstances. Twenty years ago Exceptional Leave to Remain (ELR) was applied to many people who, ultimately, were granted ILR.
Alongside the newly arriving people from Afghanistan there are very many others, from all over the world, who have been in ‘limbo’ – as in a condition of prolonged uncertainty or neglect – for years as they wait for decisions, alongside others who have been cast there because of serial failures in the handling of their legal application processes over decades and more.
This is why there are an estimated 1.5 million people in UK without any form of immigration status. These are people without equitable access to housing, healthcare and food and the personal physical safety that these resources create.
This is why we call for #StatusNow4All #HealthandSafety4All.