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Asylum: Employment

Question for Home Office

UIN HL8410, tabled on 23 September 2020

To ask Her Majesty's Government, further to the report by the Lift the Ban coalition Lift the Ban: Why giving people seeking asylum the right to work is common sense, published on 30 July, what assessment they have made of the potential economic benefit of giving asylum seekers the right to work in the UK.

Answered on

7 October 2020

Asylum seekers can work in the UK if their claim has been outstanding for 12 months, through no fault of their own. Those allowed to work are restricted to jobs on the Shortage Occupation List, which is published by the Home Office and based on expert advice from the Migration Advisory Committee.

It is important to distinguish between those who need protection and those seeking to work here, who can apply for a work visa under the Immigration Rules. Our wider policy could be undermined if migrants bypassed work visa Rules by lodging unfounded asylum claims here.

The Home Office is currently reviewing policy on right to work.

As part of the plans to speed up Asylum decision making, over the last 18 months, UK Visas and Immigration have increased the number of Asylum decision makers and support staff as part of a rolling recruitment campaign and mobilised a transformation programme that seeks to simplify, streamline and digitise processes.

Answered by

Home Office