Welcoming Welsh Government announcements to help end migrant destitution

Migration Some money
NewsJuly 14th, 2023

The Bevan Foundation comments on recent Welsh Government announcements relating to NRPF support.

Last week, the Welsh Government made two announcements which relate to support for people with No Recourse to Public Funds (NRPF). NRPF is a condition attached to a person’s status when they are subject to immigration control and prevents them from accessing most welfare benefits. In times of financial hardship, not having the safety net of welfare benefits puts people with NRPF in a precarious situation, at heightened risk of destitution. 

Migrant victims of abuse  

The Minister for Social Justice and Chief Whip, Jane Hutt MS, announced the Migrant Victim of Abuse Support Fund which is to be piloted for a year by BAWSO. It intends to learn from the Home Office pilot from 2020 and close the gaps in provision which act as unnecessary barriers to people with NRPF fleeing violence against women, domestic abuse, and sexual violence.   

Findings from the Migrant Victim of Abuse Support Fund and the Home Office pilot will be used to influence longer-term measures to meet the needs of migrants with NRPF escaping sexual violence in Wales. It is a welcome announcement, which supports people’s needs irrespective of immigration status, ensuring progress is made towards the ‘no victim left out’ approach. 

School Essentials Grant 

The Minister for Education, Jeremy Miles MS, announced that applications for the School Essentials Grant are open for the next year school year. Formally known as the Pupil Development Grant, the School Essentials Grant provides payments to children from low-income households in receipt of certain benefits to help meet the increased costs of going to school.  Those eligible can apply for a grant of £125 per child, or £200 for those starting secondary school, to contribute towards the cost of school uniform, sports kit and trainers, and equipment. 

School uniform grants are not public funds for immigration purposes, but access to the School Essentials Grant is often triggered by free school meal eligibility, entitlement is dependent on receipt of free school meals, which are available to children affected by NRPF only at a local authority’s discretion. The Bevan Foundation is calling for all local authorities to make free school meals and the School Essentials Grant available to children affected by NRPF and ensure the ‘child first, migrant second’ approach is enforced.  All children from low-income households need to be supported through the financial hardships escalated by the cost-of-living crisis.  


Tagged with: BAME & migrants


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