Latest ArticlesCOP28: 7 food and agriculture innovations needed to protect the climate and feed a rapidly growing world Santos, now booted from the House, got elected as a master of duplicity — here’s how it worked Colonized countries rarely ask for redress over past wrongs − the reasons can be complex Artificial wombs could someday be a reality – here’s how they may change our notions of parenthood Turmoil at OpenAI shows we must address whether AI developers can regulate themselves Who is still getting HIV in America? Medication is only half the fight – homing in on disparities can help get care to those who need it most Electric arc furnaces: the technology poised to make British steelmaking more sustainable Sustainability schemes deployed by business most often ineffective, research reveals Destruction of Ukrainian heritage: why losing historical icons can leave a long shadow These programs make college possible for students with developmental disabilities
The Home Office has been accused of deliberately introducing delays into a scheme designed to speed up the process of asylum claims in the UK.
The scheme, announced in February, aimed to reduce the waiting time for asylum claims to be processed from up to a year, to just six months. However, a recent report by the independent Chief Inspector of Borders and Immigration has found that the Home Office has built in numerous delays into the system, meaning that the six-month target is unlikely to be achieved.
The report found that the Home Office had “insufficiently considered the practical implications” of the scheme, leading to a “lack of clarity” and “unnecessary delays in decision-making”. It also highlighted a number of problems with the system’s IT infrastructure, which is hindering the processing of claims.
The findings have been met with criticism from refugee and migrant rights organisations, who argue that the delays are unacceptable. “The government’s delays in processing asylum claims are already causing serious harm to vulnerable people,” said Stephen Hale, Chief Executive of Refugee Action. “It’s unacceptable that the Home Office has failed to adequately plan the roll-out of the new system, meaning it will not deliver the promised six-month target.”
The report has also raised concerns that the scheme’s delays could affect the rights of those seeking asylum in the UK. Claire Colleran, a Senior Policy Officer at the Refugee Council, said: “It is vital that the Home Office gets this right and puts in place a system that is swift, effective, and compliant with the UK’s obligations under international law.”
The Home Office has responded to the report, saying that it is “committed” to implementing the scheme and that it is “working to address the issues raised” by the chief inspector.
The debacle has highlighted the need for the Home Office to ensure that the new system is robust and properly planned, in order to ensure that asylum seekers are not subjected to unnecessary delays.