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Digital exclusion of asylum seekers

EDM (Early Day Motion) 1060: tabled on 23 October 2020

Tabled in the 2019-21 session.

This motion has been signed by 20 Members. It has not yet had any amendments submitted.

Motion text

That this House recognises that asylum seekers in the UK receive cash support of £37.75 per week in the form of cash loaded on to an ASPEN debit card; notes that the Home Office describes this cash support as helping asylum seekers pay for essentials such as food, clothing and toiletries; considers that the ability to get online is also an essential need in modern society; appreciates that the need for online connectivity is particularly acute for asylum seekers, many of whom are vulnerable, isolated, and have family and friends trapped in dangerous conditions elsewhere around the world; regrets that many asylum seekers find themselves digitally excluded due to their inability to access affordable, reliable internet access through the asylum support system; understands that the ASPEN card system prevents asylum seekers from paying for efficient, low-cost mobile internet contracts through direct debit, and instead forces many to choose between purchasing prohibitively expensive pay-as-you-go data packages or affording other essentials such as food and toiletries; believes that it is grossly unfair that those with the lowest amount to live on are forced to pay the highest price to get online; thanks the Scottish Asylum Seeker Residents Association and Maryhill Integration Network for their work highlighting this important issue; and calls on the Government to widen the scope of asylum support system to ensure that asylum seekers can access affordable, reliable internet service, and provide a commensurate increase in the asylum support to cover these costs.

The first 6 Members who have signed to support the motion are the sponsors. The primary sponsor is generally the person who tabled the motion and has responsibility for it. The date shown is when the Member signed the motion.

In addition to the sponsors, the following Members have signed to support the motion.

There are no withdrawn signatures for this motion.