Born in Sudan, Asima fled violent conflict in her homeland and sought asylum in Britain. Poorly educated, unemployed and vulnerable, she relies on state benefits, which are conditional and inadequate, to survive.
At the beginning of October her father had a stroke. Thanks to the kindness of a friend who paid her airfare, Asima visited him in Ethiopia. Upon returning to London, she discovered her rent payments had been stopped by the local authority because she’d been abroad longer than the 28-day limit. In fact she was away 30 days, two days over the regulated time.
The effect of this decision is that Asima will fall further into debt, may well be evicted for rent arrears and could be made homeless. The anxiety that enshrouds her will intensify, despair deepen; it is another blow in a life littered with pain and distress, reinforcing a view of systemic injustice. Whist the rich and privileged are legally allowed to stash millions away in off-shore accounts to avoid paying tax, a poor refugee is penalized if she strays over the narrow lines of control within which she is forced to live.
Slaves to the System
Asima’s story is a small example of the petty systemic injustice that impacts on virtually everyone and is destroying the lives of millions of people throughout the world.
Based on an outdated, corrupt ideology, the socio-economic systems that govern people’s lives are broken totally and need to be radically overhauled. Inherently unjust they punish the…