Refugees face risk of deportation under Priti Patel’s ‘cruel’ asylum overhaul, charities warn

Priti Patel’s plans for a new asylum system would create a “dangerous and fragmented” process that places vulnerable refugees at risk of deportation at any time, it has been warned.

As part of an overhaul of the immigration and asylum system, the home secretary is to unveil plans that will see genuine refugees who arrive in Britain via unauthorised routes denied an automatic right to asylum.

Instead, they will be regularly reassessed for removal from the country, as well as having their family reunion rights and access to benefits limited.

The proposals have been touted as “firm but fair” by the government – but lawyers and charities warn the plans risk “tearing up refugee law” and would have the “cruel” effect of leaving traumatised people in a prolonged state of uncertainty.

The majority of people granted refugee status in the UK arrive via unauthorised routes. In 2019, only around one in five grants of protection arrived through the government’s designated resettlement schemes.

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