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  • Writer's pictureSarah Taal

Why a Trauma-informed Partnership Approach to Women’s Asylum Claims and Support is Essential

The IRiS Anthology on migration and diversity is a way of celebrating the work IRiS has done, mapping how the study of migration and migration-driven diversity has changed in the last decade and put forward ideas on how it needs to change to be fit for the decade ahead.

Migration, displacement and diversity: The IRiS Anthology is out! It is available on Amazon in three formats (hardback, paperback, ebook): The price is below the usual tag for academic books and this hopefully will make it more accessible to people.

The Baobab Women’s Project contributed to the anthology hoping to improve the handling of the gender aspects of women’s asylum claims. It draws on the findings of a University of Birmingham project on sexual and gender-based violence (SGBV) against refugees from displacement to arrival (see SEREDA 2022). A quick glance into how the Home Office assesses a woman’s need for protection suggests that it could better guide her through the process of seeking asylum by adopting a trauma-informed partnership approach.

The piece argues that the granting of asylum status, refusals, psychological help and trauma-informed care, whether or not women are granted asylum status has a lot to do with the quality of the care and advise they receive throughout their asylum journey, and whether they can access safe accommodation near supportive networks. It talks about how being a refugee is inevitably associated with having experienced traumatic situations, and that all applicants for asylum should be offered access to psychological services. Recommending that more training needs to be available to all people who work with refugees so that they can provide gender and trauma-informed care.

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