QUEEN'S BENCH DIVISION
THE ADMINISTRATIVE COURT
B e f o r e :
|THE QUEEN ON THE APPLICATION OF HAWBIR ZARDASHT||(CLAIMANT)|
|THE SECRETARY OF STATE FOR THE HOME DEPARTMENT||(DEFENDANT)|
MR N GIFFIN QC AND MR J P WAITE (instructed by Treasury Solicitor) appeared on behalf of the DEFENDANT
Crown Copyright ©
Friday, 23rd January 2004
"Destitution is an emotive word, and it might be argued that denying support to the destitute is necessarily inhuman and degrading treatment. Such an argument has not been advanced before us, and for good reason".
"T arrived in this country by air from Malaysia on 4th March 2003 and failed without any good reason to apply for asylum until 10th March. He has not even now been interviewed in relation to his asylum claim, but he was interviewed and refused asylum support by letter dated 7th April. He was at that point in temporary accommodation, but from 18th April he began to sleep and spend his days at Heathrow Airport".
"It is impossible to find that T's condition on 24th April had reached or was verging on the inhuman or the degrading. He had shelter, sanitary facilities and some money for food. He was not entirely well physically, but not so unwell as to need immediate treatment. We therefore allow this appeal".
On 24th April, it was some six days after the 18th, when, upon the facts, he began to sleep and spend his days at Heathrow airport. Thus "the shelter" to which the Court of Appeal paid regard was, spending his days and sleeping at Heathrow Airport, which he had adopted to fend for himself.
The Present Case
"He has slept rough since 10 September 2003... he has been [street] homeless since 11 September ... street homeless... only had intermittent access to food".
"Mr Zardasht's instructions were that the only independent corroborative evidence that he had confirmed that he left NASS accommodation on 5th September 2003 was the letter that he had received which was dated 4th September 2003 but which was stamped with this date. His instructions were that he stayed at the Clapham Baptiste Church on the 7th, 8th and 9th September 2003. His instructions were also that he had approached the Refugee Council in Brixton for food during the daytime."
"I have no friends or relatives in the UK that can help me and I am not aware of any charities that can help me and neither are my solicitors".
"Mr Zardasht disputes this and in view of his present circumstances (he has been homeless and has had not money at all to buy food) we formally request you to resume providing Asylum Support to him with immediate effect".
From what I have said earlier in this judgment it will be obvious that that sort of approach to the Secretary of State simply falls miles from the requirement which is required in order to obtain, as I said, an efficient and coherent result from the Secretary of State's consideration.
"I have complied the List which is attached at Exhibit 'MS1' which details day centres for homeless people in London, all of which offer a range of practical help and advice, which may include: meals, showers, clothing, medical services, advice and information on alcohol and drugs, benefits, and finding accommodation".
"I am also aware of additional resources which could be accessed by the Claimant. I attach details of 'Hostels Online' which is a resource that the Claimant, or certainly those advising... might wish to utilise. Details can be found at Exhibit 'MS2'".