Why the Coronavirus Lockdown is very difficult for Young Refugees and Asylum Seekers

By Jummah, 19, Portsmouth

There is no doubt that many people across the UK have been affected by this epidemic, whether mentally, economically, infectiously or whether they lost someone of their love. In my view, I believe that the most affected ones among those people are asylum seekers and refugees, especially young ones. This essay will explain my opinion in more detail.

One reason that I believe that asylum seekers and refugees are the most affected ones among those is that many of them have passed through difficult times in the past which affected them negatively. As a result of that none of them were able to afford any more bad news, especially if something is related to death.

Another reason why asylum seekers have suffered during the lockdown period is that all of us we know that the human being is one of the living things which cannot be living by themselves for a long time, or be isolated from others. So according to that, we can say that many of them have been feeling lonely and isolated from the community and friends. In addition to that there are those who are not able to speak English, so they could not understand what is going on or how to follow the government’s structure for Covid-19 safety guidance which made is much harder for them to be positive during lockdown.

The final reason is that the asylum processes were delayed because of the virus. Many people were waiting for interviews with the Home Office that were cancelled or delayed. We cannot blame anyone with that because it’s in order to avoid risk, but if we put all these factors together, we find that lockdown has generated a negative impact refugees and asylum seekers, particularly young people.

In conclusion, although it is true that many asylum seekers across the UK have been affected by the lockdown more than some others, on balance I am of the opinion that all people should be supported mentally and emotionally in order to boost their morale and motivate them.

The British Red Cross supports vulnerable refugees and asylum seekers through services in 58 towns and cities across the country. Most of these young people don’t have parents or guardians in the UK. They are supported through 1:1 casework and regular group sessions to navigate the asylum process, gain life skills and access leadership opportunities that help them rebuild their lives in the UK.

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