It’s been reported in the Guardian that those who come to Britain by crossing the English Channel illegally will now be housed in a former military barracks while their asylum claims are processed. The article reports the local Conservative MP Damian Collins as saying that their will be somewhere in the region of 400 people as well as families in this military accommodation at Napier Barracks close to Folkestone, Kent, starting from 21 September.
This move comes as the massive influx of migrants crossing the English Channel reaches record levels with the guardian article stating “According to an analysis by PA Media, more than 6,350 people have crossed so far in 2020.”
In a letter from Damian Collins, he expresses his objections to this move saying: “We have great concerns about the impact this large open camp will have on the welfare of the local residential community and also those people in the asylum system who will be placed at the barracks itself.
“We would ask that you reverse this decision and find more suitable accommodation for people who are currently having their cases processed by the asylum system.”
A statement from Folkestone and Hythe district council read: “lack of consultation on this matter and the exceptionally poor communication with us”.
It added: “We are quite sure that members of the community will have many questions, and we are seeking clarification as a matter of urgency.”
A spokesperson from the government said: “During these unprecedented times, the government is working with a range of partners and across departments to secure further accommodation and the MoD [Ministry of Defence] has offered use of some of its sites.
“When using contingency accommodation we work closely with organisations, including local authorities and law enforcement, throughout the process to ensure value for money and that vulnerable asylum seekers, who would otherwise be destitute, have suitable accommodation while their claims are processed.” Article in The Guardian
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