Afghan refugees will have £39.63 a week to live on in the UK
Could you live on that amount?
Afghan refugees will have just £39.63 to live on per week while in the UK.
The money is intended to cover food, clothing, toiletries, and other essentials.
Though housing will be free, options will include council houses other would-be tenants have rejected.
Most refugees will not be able to get a job once they land in the UK so will struggle to support themselves, although the government has said those with temporary residency could now upgrade their immigration status, allowing them access to permanent jobs with unrestricted rights to work. Afghans who worked for the British military and UK government will also be given indefinite leave to remain, rather than the five years' residency previously offered.
The UK evacuated more than 8,000 people eligible for the Afghan Relocations and Assistance Policy from 13 August, but charities have already sounded a warning after been called on to provide very basic necessities, with refugees arriving with little more than the clothing on their backs.
A spokesperson from the UNHCR said: “Asylum seekers often don’t have the right to work in the UK, which means there is no possibility of them ever being able to work, let alone ‘steal’ a job.
“Refugees also return a net benefit outcome on our economy when they are allowed to work in this country.”
But even when it comes to basic essentials like food, refugees lack the funds to live comfortably will full stomachs. The average weekly food shop for one person is £26.50, according to finance site Nimblefins. Then, when you add toiletries and cleaning products to your bill, your quality of life is looking pretty grim.
The Guardian spoke to refugee families in August about their quality of life in the UK.
“When they come back from the school holiday, her friends are talking about what they did, where they went. But we do nothing. We want to make a birthday party for her so she can talk about that with her friends,” Binar told the Guardian.
“Always her friends in school talk about trips – going to the zoo, vacations to places. I looked at going to the zoo, and the family tickets were I think £65, it’s too much for me. Also, I don’t have a car.”
“Sometimes I cry for myself; everything is secondhand, everything is help. I can never do something for myself, go to the salon, do something for my hair. When you become a mum you have everything dreamed for your daughter, and I can’t do anything. I’ve given up, actually," says Nesrîn.
Mohmand is another refugee who spoke to the Guardian who says that once he is left with just £2 a day for food.
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