The UK Lesbian and Gay Immigration Group (UKLGIG) have released a report examining the standards used by the Home Office to assess asylum claims based on sexual orientation and gender identity.
Titled “Still Falling Short,” and drawing on an analysis of 48 applications, the report highlights good practice. Simultaneously, it flags Home Office expectations and attitudes toward evidence which hinder application processing and place an undue burden on LGBTQI+ people seeking asylum.
The main conclusions, summarised in a press release, are:
- Home Office decision-makers are not applying the correct legal standard of proof of ‘reasonable likelihood’ in all asylum claims based on sexual orientation or gender identity.
- LGBTQI+ claimants are routinely disbelieved if they didn’t apply for asylum immediately, even in cases where they didn’t know their sexual orientation or gender identity were grounds for receiving protection.
- Statements from friends, partners and LGBTQI+ organisations testifying to applicants’ sexual orientation or gender identity are frequently disregarded.
Read the full report here. UKLGIG offer one-to-one support and peer support groups for the most vulnerable LGBTQI+ asylum seekers; to register interest, you can attend their monthly meeting on asylum, in London or Birmingham.
UKLGIG also offer monthly meetings (in London) with solicitors for LGBTQI+ people wishing to apply for partnership visas.