On this page you can find information on and download links for reports published by and featuring the work of PAFRAS.
Understanding how asylum seekers and refugees access and experience mental health support in Leeds
A report on PAFRAS/Touchstone Action Research Project 2011–2012
Dzmitry Karpuk, Mary Cunningham, Rupinder Kaur, Samantha Short, Caitlyn Cannon, David Odunukwe & Jon Beech
In July 2011, NHS Leeds commissioned Positive Action for Refugees and Asylum Seekers (PAFRAS) and Touchstone to undertake some participative research into
- the way in which Refugees and Asylum Seekers (RAS) navigate their way into and through Mental Health Services of Leeds,
- how existing support systems can be made leaner and more responsive,
- how the system might better respond to the needs of people in mental distress, but who do not meet the criteria for mental health interventions.
The research element of the work was hosted and performance managed by Touchstone within the BME Community Development team. This research is a collaborative piece of work drawing on the strengths of both Touchstone and PAFRAS.
The Wages of Fear explores the experiences of undocumented workers in the UK. It investigates the occupational risks facing undocumented workers, and finds evidence of routine exploitation, injury, and harm. It further provides a snapshot of the violent consequences of increased workplace raids.
This report is a joint publication of PAFRAS and the University of Liverpool, it was written with financial support from the University of Liverpool and the Kenneth Miller Trust, and we wish to thank them for their assistance.
This report, commissioned by the Leeds Community Foundation in the summer of 2009 and published by PAFRAS, explores the healthcare needs of destitute asylum seekers and their experiences of the healthcare system while taking a critical look at health policy nationally and the delivery of health services locally.The research looks at the restrictions placed upon access to healthcare instituted at the level of national policy, but also at both formal and informal barriers to access at the local level.
Its aims are:
- To set out workable recommendations for reform of health policy at national level,
- To make proposals for the improvement of the quality and availability of care for refused asylum seekers, and
- To help to empower refused asylum seekers to access the health services that they are entitled to.
This report researched and written by Dianne Taylor and published by PAFRAS in March 2009 is a first-hand investigation of the experiences and survival strategies of destitute asylum seekers living in the UK .
The report, which caused some controversy at its publication, is no loner available through our website. We have removed it at the request of some of the individuals whose stories were featured in it, who no longer wish to be in the public spotlight
If you wish to learn about experiences of destitution in Britain we can recommend the following reports by other organisations:
- Not Gone, But Forgotten, British Red Cross (2010)
- Still Destitute, Joseph Rowntree Charitable Trust (2009)
- More Destitution in Leeds, Joseph Rowntree Charitable Trust (2008)
In 2007 PAFRAS received funding from Social Services to deliver a one year “Healthy Living Project‟ primarily for destitute asylum seekers. The objectives of the project were to improve the health and well being of destitute asylum seekers and, through a program of health advice, exercises and therapies, to address their physical and mental health needs. As pilot project, this project also aimed at reducing health inequalities by enabling refused asylum seekers access to services available as well as services not currently available to them.
Between 2006 and 2008 the Independent Asylum Commission conducted an eighteen month investigation into all aspects of the asylum system in the United Kingdom. As a front line organisation working with asylum seekers PAFRAS prepared a detailed response on its work and experiences for the commissioners. You can read that report here. To find out more about the IAC and its work go here.