Controversial Housing Measures: Refugee Charities Criticize UK’s Approach to Asylum Seeker Accommodation

The Home Secretary, Suella Braverman, is preparing contingency plans to house up to 2,000 asylum seekers in marquees located on disused military sites.


The move comes as an alternative to using hotels and is aimed at handling an expected surge of small boat crossings.

Recent purchases of marquees have been made by the Home Secretary, with the intention to accommodate the migrants by the end of August.

However, a similar proposal was rejected last year due to concerns over potential legal challenges based on inhumane treatment of asylum seekers.

Tuberculosis Cases Detected at Former RAF Site

At the former RAF site in Wethersfield, Braintree, Essex, a small number of positive tuberculosis results have been identified.


Tests are currently underway to determine whether these cases are active or not.

Controversial Floating Barge for Asylum Seekers

The Home Office is set to send the first group of 50 people to the UK’s first floating barge designated for asylum seekers, known as the Bibby Stockholm, despite facing safety concerns and local opposition.

The facility, located in Portland, Dorset, is designed to accommodate around 500 men at a time.

The government’s aim is to reduce the reliance on hotels for housing individuals awaiting the results of their asylum claims.

However, this move has been met with criticism from refugee charities, who argue that using barges and former military bases for housing asylum seekers is detrimental to the well-being of vulnerable people and raises safety concerns for migrants.


Concerns and Opposition

Conservative Members of Parliament representing the areas where these facilities are being established have expressed concerns about the potential impact on their constituencies.

The arrival of the Bibby Stockholm barge in Portland Port was met with protests, and some residents have raised safety concerns for their community, which has a population of around 13,000.

The lack of infrastructure to accommodate newcomers and existing residents in the area has also been a point of contention.

Final Preparations Underway for the Barge

Despite the controversies and opposition, the Home Office confirmed that the Bibby Stockholm has undergone a statutory inspection and refurbishment.

The barge is currently berthing in Portland and is undergoing final preparations to ensure compliance with all appropriate regulations before the arrival of the first group of asylum seekers in the coming weeks.


The welfare of those in their care is stated to be the top priority for the authorities.

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