LondonNet News Headlines
10/10/01
Asylum System Chaos Harms Refugees' Health
- BMA blames vouchers for problems

THE GOVERNMENT'S draconian asylum system is bad the the health of refugees, according to the British Medical Association.

Specifically, the BMA charge that the controversial voucher system and the dispersal of refugees away from London has contributed to a deterioration in the health of asylum seekers.

"The current system is chaotic. Families have been housed in tiny bedsits, where a toddler has not been able to learn to walk because they simply do not have the space to walk in," said Dr Michael Wilks, chairman of the BMA ethics committee. "Vouchers do not provide anything like the basic nutritional requirements for children or young mothers."

"If you are an asylum seeker and you come to the UK, there is little chance your health will improve - in fact, it may well deteriorate."

There are indications that the hated voucher system will be scrapped after a review by the Home Office, but Home Secretary David Blunkett has put what would be a popular measure on the backburner to concentrate on anti-terrorist schemes.




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