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Refugee Council: Give asylum seekers decent accommodation

Refugee Council has criticized poor housing and security services for asylum seekers in the UK.

Recently the UK Border Agency announced that they have awarded new contracts for providing housing for asylum seekers across the UK to large security companies Serco, G4S, and Clearel.

These contracts, for both initial accommodation and temporary accommodation while people wait for their asylum claims to be processed, will begin in April 2012.

“We have consistently raised concerns in the past about the poor standard of accommodation provided for many asylum seekers, and the situation has the potential to deteriorate further with very large super regional contracts,” Donna Covey, Chief Executive of the Refugee Council said.

She said that they’ll be working closely with all the contractors and UKBA, and monitoring feedback from their clients following the changes, to ensure that their living conditions are not only adequate, but also safe and comfortable.

“Many asylum seekers have been through hugely traumatic circumstances in their home country and on their journey to the UK, and arrive here with nothing. It is unacceptable to house asylum seekers in sub-standard, unsecured and overcrowded conditions for cost-cutting purposes while they seek safety here and wait for a decision on their claim,” Ms. Covey said.

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