The Law Society of England and Wales has said that immigration statistics for year ending September 2022 provide further evidence of poor and slow decision-making at Britain’s Home Office.
The organisation said that this might delay or deny justice for people claiming asylum.
“Far too many people are waiting far too long for a decision on their request for sanctuary in the UK,” said the society’s deputy vice-president Richard Atkinson.
The Law Society Gazette of England and Wales said that 148,533 individuals were waiting for a decision from the Home Office on their claim for asylum in the year to September 2022 – up from 87,995 a year earlier.
Half of decisions overturned
Atkinson noted that, in the year to September, just 16,400 initial decisions were made by the Home Office, “barely denting the backlog”.
“The number of people waiting longer than six months for a decision on their asylum claim has nearly doubled in that time to 97,717 in September 2022 – up from 56,520 in September 2022.
“Data is not available to show how much longer than six months people are being left in limbo,” he added.
More than half of Home Office decisions were overturned when appealed, a figure that Atkinson said highlighted a problem with the quality of decision-making.
He called on the government to honour the UK’s obligations to refugees, as enshrined in the United Nations Refugee Convention.