Thank you for contacting me about asylum seekers and refugee resettlement.
The United Kingdom has a proud history of supporting those in need of protection; our resettlement programmes have provided safe and legal routes to better futures for hundreds of thousands of people from across the globe. This includes individuals from Hong Kong, Syria, Afghanistan, and Ukraine.
Regarding Afghanistan, in January 2022, the Minister for Afghan Resettlement announced the launch of the Afghan Citizens Resettlement Scheme, which will resettle up to 20,000 eligible people over the coming years. This is in addition to those who have been relocated under the Afghan Relocations and Assistance Policy. It is particularly encouraging that the two remaining referral pathways onto the ACRS have now opened which means the UK will honour its commitment to eligible personnel who were called forward or specifically authorised for evacuation, but who were unable to board flights.
Since 2015, the UK has resettled over 27,000 refugees through safe and legal routes directly from areas of conflict and instability. Furthermore, the refugee family route, which enables the spouse or partner and children of a refugee sponsor who are under 18 years of age to join their family member in the UK, has provided more than 39,500 family reunion visas from the same year.
Resettlement is vital as a safe and legal pathway to protection for vulnerable refugees fleeing persecution. It is right that the Government continues to offer safe pathways for those in need. The launch of a new global UK Resettlement Scheme will build on the success of previous schemes and continue our proud record of resettling refugees who need our help from around the world.
The Nationality and Borders Act allows the UK to continue to resettle genuine refugees directly from places of danger and to offer refugee family reunions. It improves support for refugees to help them build their life in the UK, integrate and become self-sufficient members of society. The legislation also introduces a new temporary protection status for those who do not come directly to the UK or claim asylum without delay once here, but who have, in any event, been recognised as requiring protection.
I believe that an immigration policy is needed which welcomes people to the UK through safe and legal routes.
Thank you again for taking the time to contact me.