On 15 January 2024, the Asylum Support (Amendment) Regulations 2023/1372 came into force. The 2023 Regulations amended regulation 10A of the Asylum Support Regulations 2000 by increasing weekly payment rates for asylum-seeking pregnant women and young children for the first time in over 20 years. The Secretary of State made the 2023 Regulations in direct response to strategic litigation brought by a mother of two who was struggling to meet the basic nutritional needs of her children on the previous, lower rates of support. The client was represented by Sasha Rozansky (partner) and Aiya Nakash (paralegal) of Deighton Pierce Glynn, instructing Ben Amunwa of The 36 Group, led by Zoe Leventhal KC of Matrix Chambers.
Thousands are likely to benefit from the increased rates (according to Home Office figures, some 1,300 babies are born to mothers receiving asylum support each year). The age threshold for additional payments has also been raised so that 3 year old children may now receive this support.
The case builds on the same legal team’s previous success in R (HA & Ors) v SSHD  EWHC 1876 (Admin), where it was established that pregnant women and young children in asylum support accommodation in full-board hotels were entitled to receive additional payments to meet their basic nutritional needs, which the Secretary of State had previously refused to provide.
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Involving Ben Amunwa