The Chichester Observer has published a great an article that gives our very own Daoud* a voice. Forgotten by the Home Office, and left losing “sight of his dreams”, we are all reminded of the difficulties asylum seekers face, indefinitely waiting for the Home Office to decide the direction of their lives. Daoud, from Cameroon, has been waiting for years, and his life is on hold as a result.
In response to comments in the article from the Home Office, Daoud has expressed his further disappointment;
“I had hoped that the home office would surprise me with a different excuse. But it is the same old mouldy bread of an excuse that they keep biting. Which only favours their actions. I could do better than some of them there. The question as to why my case has only just been allocated to a case worker after two years still remains a mystery.”
The Home Offices’ attitude towards Daoud, and their lack of action is sadly unsurprising to us. Firstly, because we know a number of asylum seekers just in our area who have been waiting many years for their Home Office decisions, all the while unable to build new lives, contribute to the UK economy or recover from their traumatic pasts. And secondly, because it is well-publicised Government policy to treat asylum seekers with hostility, AKA the ‘hostile environment’, so his appalling treatment is actually sanctioned.
The Chichester Observer’s report is missing one crucial piece of the story – Daoud had already given the Home Office the evidence they requested, but after taking two years to start processing his appeal, his statement was now ‘out of date’! How can a statement that he would face persecution and further violence in Cameroon due to his sexual orientation become out of date? His sexuality hasn’t changed and we aren’t aware of a sudden cultural shift in Cameroon. For a number of reasons, believe that the Home Office asking for new evidence of sexual relationships is disriminatory and an excuse for further delays. The original evidence would not be out of date if the Home Office had begun processing the case when they were supposed to.
We hope that by sharing Daoud’s story we can help make the Home Office and UK Government accountable for their failings and for the lives they are ruining.
Read the article here.
*name has been changed to protect identity