Minister says councils must have UK Government support.
Migration and Refugees Minister Emma Roddick has urged the UK Government to provide financial support for local authorities as it presses ahead with plans to close asylum hotels.
In a letter to Immigration Minister Robert Jenrick, Ms Roddick welcomed measures to end the inappropriate use of hotels to accommodate people seeking asylum along with UK Government measures to tackle the backlog in asylum decisions.
However, she said the move was placing further pressure on local services and called for increased funding to enable councils to meet the needs of refugees when they receive a positive asylum decision.
Ms Roddick said:
“The Scottish Government has long been clear in our view that hotels are not appropriate accommodation for people seeking asylum.
“While I welcome your recognition that the asylum decision backlog must be tackled, I want to make clear that it is completely unacceptable and reckless for the UK Government to shift a significant burden onto local authorities without providing financial support.
“The UK Government must provide funding to local authorities and work constructively with them to ensure that people receiving a positive asylum decision are supported to move-on from asylum accommodation, without creating unmanageable pressure on housing and homelessness services over a short space of time.
“It is UK Government mismanagement of asylum decision making which has created the backlog and the consequences of that cannot be passed to local authorities without any support to manage them. I request urgent provision of funding to local authorities to support move-on associated with the backlog clearance.”
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