Diane Abbott – 2016 Parliamentary Question to the Home Office

The below Parliamentary question was asked by Diane Abbott on 2016-02-08.

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, with reference to the Unicef press release of 2 February 2016, More children and women seek safety in Europe, what steps she is taking to support vulnerable women and children entering the UK.

Karen Bradley

We carefully consider all asylum claims and provide protection for those who need it, in accordance with our international obligations. We are committed to treating all those who seek asylum with dignity and respect, including women and girls whose fear is based on gender related persecution, such as sexual violence in conflict situations. We provide accommodation and other support that ensure asylum seekers are not destitute while their claim is considered. The Home Office liaises closely with corporate partners on gender related issues, including active involvement in the wider Home Office strategy to tackle violence against women and girls (VAWG). We have developed an asylum gender action plan and have made good progress in improving the asylum process for women. We work closely with local authorities, children’s services and other agencies to ensure that asylum seeking children receive appropriate support and care. Local authorities, who lead on child protection, have a statutory duty under the Children Act to ensure that they safeguard and promote the welfare of all children, regardless of their immigration status or nationality. Under these arrangements, looked after children are provided with access to all their needs in relation to education, accommodation, psychological or health.