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East Sussex County Council Support Right to Work for People Seeking Asylum

By Alex Kempton, Media and Communications Lead for Hastings Community of Sanctuary

At a meeting of the full Council on Tuesday 15th October 2019 East Sussex County Council unanimously passed a resolution in support of the right to work for people seeking asylum.

Though declining to join the National campaign, “Lift the Ban”, the Council did resolve the following:

“East Sussex County Council believes that:

(i) people seeking asylum want to be able to work so that they can use their skills and make the most of their potential, integrate into their communities, and provide for themselves and their families;

(ii) restrictions on the right to work can lead to extremely poor mental health outcomes, and a waste of potentially invaluable talents and skills both for the economy of East Sussex and the UK; and

(iii) allowing people seeking asylum the right to work would therefore lead to positive outcomes for those seeking asylum in East Sussex and for the local and national economy.

East Sussex County Council calls on the UK Government to consider giving people seeking asylum the right to work, unconstrained by the shortage occupation list, after they have waited six months for a decision on their initial asylum claim.”

This is a great result! We have been campaigning for this for many months, and had previously succeeded in lobbying Hastings Borough Council to pass this resolution. For a County Council to unanimously pass the resolution, and one which is of the same political persuasion of the current National Government, is really excellent news and testament to the strength of the campaign.