The risks asylum seekers face if returned to their country of origin must be made clearer to decision makers, says a new report.
For eighteen months the Immigration Advisory Service (IAS) scrutinised the asylum system focusing on how information (contained in Country of Origin Information reports) regarding the social, judicial and political conditions in a country, which an asylum seeker is fleeing, is used. It found this information was crucial to determining asylum cases but was not used enough. Ninety per cent of legal representatives the IAS interviewed said the information, which gave a context to each individual’s case and helped prove credibility, was not given enough weight.
The sources of country profiles include experts, news services, NGOs and government bodies. The report highlights that the underuse of this information could put those seeking asylum at risk of further persecution or death.
The report, Refugee Roulette, was funded by the Big Lottery Fund and examined barriers to accessing the information and how this could be improved to make the asylum process fairer and more rigorous.
Download a copy of the full report here (pdf file, 3.9mb)
Download a summary here (pdf file, 180kb)