The Home Office is “trying to gag” volunteers visiting an army barracks where asylum-seekers are being housed by using the Official Secrets Act, it is claimed. Help Refugees supports these findings. Some of the programs that Migrant Help has been involved in are: 1998-1999 – Dover Asylum Project – Home Office: Provision of reception and casework support to … Home Office accused of ‘gagging’ volunteers at migrant camp. The Asylum Advice guide consists of the following sections. “It cannot hide behind its providers, as ultimate responsibility for supporting vulnerable people in the asylum system lies with the government.”. Both Migrant Help and the Home Office have admitted there are problems with asylum seekers receiving the assistance they are entitled to under the new system. The Home Office is to stop using a video it put on social media accusing migrants' lawyers of being "activists". It’s critical that ministers recognise this crisis and act to ensure some of the most vulnerable people in our society are protected.”. We continue to provide humanitarian aid across Europe and beyond. The Nigerian national, who with her children – aged 12, 15 and 19 – has just been granted asylum, meaning they will soon be moving out, said she first contacted Migrant Help two months ago to tell them their washing machine was broken. The AIRE advice contract also involves advising refugees on what do if their claims are refused. If you are applying for “Section 95” or “Section 4” support, they need to assess if you are destitute now or will become so in th… Like many others, Migrant Help expressed concerns when made aware of the decision to use military barracks in Folkestone and Penally to house asylum seekers, and what impact it may have on this vulnerable client group. Call one of the asylum helplines to get free help with filling in forms. You can get more information about asylum support from the customer contact centre. I was stuck in the cold for two weeks. She added: “I never thought I would say this, but I miss G4S. I was stuck alone in this house without hot water, no heating. Details of how to access these can be found on our website. We do one wash a week, so sometimes we have no clean socks and underwear,” Ms Uka told The Independent. Stephen Hale, chief executive of Refugee Action, said it was positive that ministers had admitted there was a problem, but called for urgent action to “fix these failings and end the needless suffering it causes”. Due to the sheer scale of this comment community, we are not able to give each post the same level of attention, but we have preserved this area in the interests of open debate. The Home Office awarded the provision of asylum support services – known as Advice, Issue Reporting and Eligibility Assistance services (Aire) – to Migrant Help in September, making the charity a single point of contact to report issues relating to asylum housing. Migrant Help was founded in 1963 by Helen Ellis (MBE) and was originally known as the 'Kent Committee for the Welfare of Migrants' (KCWM). They were quick. ... Now it has emerged that volunteers going into the site to offer help and support to those living within are being made to sign a confidentiality agreement. The Home Office will contact you within 3 days to let you know they’ve received your application. It allows our most engaged readers to debate the big issues, share their own experiences, discuss real-world solutions, and more. I just want to get out and escape from this miserable, scary, hopeless position I’m living in.”, In a third case, an unnamed asylum seeker in Leeds told of a rat infestation in his asylum house, saying: “There are lots of living and dead rats in this house and the toilet and bathroom are in an unacceptable condition. The government agency had initially refused to extend the visas … A Migrant Help spokesperson said: “We are working very hard to make access to our services easier through a number of internal measures, as well as in cooperation with the asylum accommodation providers and other agencies within the immigration sector. The Home Office have stated that they will not expect Migrant Help to have had sight of original supporting documents provided with asylum support applications. Our journalists will try to respond by joining the threads when they can to create a true meeting of independent Premium. “It’s terrible. The level of hygiene in this house is too low for human living conditions.”. The most insightful comments on all subjects will be published daily in dedicated articles. While our governments fail to take responsibility for the human rights of refugees, in particular the highly vulnerable, we are committed to campaigning for them. They don’t pick up the phone. Head office If you have a business or service related enquiry, you can email us, call us on 01304 203977 or write to us on: Migrant Help, Charlton House, Dour Street, Dover, CT16 1AT. Section 1: Migrant Help services. The footage released on Sunday represented a major embarrassment for the Home Office and its chief, with the phenomenon of tax payer-funded migrant hotels landing on Patel’s own doorstep — and significantly, on that of her constituents. Vulnerable people are being forced to live with no heating in rat-infested properties because a new government contract for the delivery of asylum support is beset with “severe failures”, charities have said. The woman resorted to spending £12 of her £75 weekly financial support to buy heating, and eventually the boiler was fixed when local support groups intervened. The other mothers left the house because they had somewhere else to go. Campaigners had hoped the new contract would lead to improvements to conditions in asylum housing, which was previously overseen by the private firms that provided the accommodation, and was already under scrutiny for reports of dirty and unsuitable living conditions. View details and apply for this Senior Client Adviser job in Croydon (CR0) with Migrant Help UK on Totaljobs. Help Refugees Limited, Company No 09842577, works under the auspices of Prism the Gift Fund, Charity No 1099682. Migrant Help provides independent advice and guidance to assist asylum seekers in the UK move through and understand the asylum process. This is much worse. I’m having to wash the clothes of four people with my hands. Home Office doesn't have capacity to tackle migrants, warns watchdog French police bust gang which smuggled up migrants into Britain Migrant Crisis France Priti Patel The report highlights a whole host of failings, none more so than the failure to bring the 157 unaccompanied children with immediate family in the UK (who have the legal right to come to the UK under Dublin 3) to be reunited with their families here in Britain. We are also recruiting additional staff.”. “Support agencies are at breaking point trying to keep everyone’s heads above water and put emergency support in place. A letter to Home Office minister Victoria Atkins, signed by more than 100 charities, warned that the new system was causing “needless suffering among those it is meant to protect”, and called on the government to take “urgent action” to address the situation​. Just call 0808 8010 503. They said this was in turn “failing” vulnerable people and exposing them to suffering and harm – including ceilings falling in, heating not working and rat infestations – leaving local support groups at “breaking point” as they try put emergency support in place. Nobody did.”. But charities said that in the two months since Migrant Help took over the contract, living conditions had become “much worse”, with asylum seekers waiting hours to get through to the charity’s helpline, despite the contract stipulating that all calls should be answered in one minute. “It was freezing. By browsing you agree to our use of them. Are you sure you want to delete this comment? A growing number of councils, charities and other organisations have pledged to boycott new Home Office rules to criminalise and deport migrant rough sleepers. You can also choose to be emailed when someone replies to your comment. Now we don’t even know who to report to.”. A Home Office spokesperson said: “We are working closely with Migrant Help to ensure that applications for support are delivered in a timely fashion. Migrant Help will earn between £10 million and £20 million a year from the deal, which will initially run for four years from September, but can be extended for up to ten years. Donations raised through this website are paid to the Help Refugees restricted fund held by Prism The Gift Fund. The scale of the story finally forced the mainstream media to report on Mr Farage’s investigation. Migrant Help will be able to complete information to indicate they have seen copy documents. UK Home Office asked maritime industry for help in deterring migrant boats But trade bodies told the government they could find no legal or safe way of assisting As our governments continue to delay the refugee family reunion process (as demonstrated by this week’s Court of Appeal judgement to overturn the Zat ruling), these children continue to risk their lives every night trying to get to their families in the UK. Read the full section. Exclusive: Ministers urged to act as asylum seekers, including single mothers with small babies, living in ‘appalling’ conditions for weeks on end due to ‘drastically increased’ waiting times under new contractor, Find your bookmarks in your Independent Premium section, under my profile. Migrant domestic abuse victims’ data must not be shared between police and Home Office, report warns. Migrant Help was shortlisted for Charity Awards in 2016 for innovation in advice and support to asylum seekers. You might need to provide further information to support your application. Six weeks later, a new washing machine was delivered but not installed, so they are still unable to use it. Another woman, who asked not to be named, said she and her two-year-old son recently had to endure two weeks without heating and hot water, leaving her child still suffering from a bad cold a fortnight later. A HOME Office flight bound for Spain to return illegal Channel migrants had to be abandoned on Thursday morning after being bogged down in legal action, The Sun … Start your Independent Premium subscription today. The Home Office has sought to defend the agreements issued to volunteers. It has already been doing similar work for the Home Office since 2014. Help Refugees welcomed the Home Affairs committee report, which calls our government and the EU’s response to the refugee crisis “lamentable”. Our vision is for a global society that protects vulnerable migrants, treats them with respect and enables them to reach their full potential. A Home Office spokesperson said: “We are working closely with Migrant Help to ensure that applications for support are delivered in a timely fashion. Support migrant centric journalism today and donate In yet another Home Office immigration U-turn, 6,000 frontline migrant NHS workers will have their UK visas further extended. I don’t have family. “We boiled water for baths. Are you sure you want to mark this comment as inappropriate? Want to bookmark your favourite articles and stories to read or reference later? Helen, a leading figure in the provision of welfare support to migrants, established our charity to give support to the high number of … When considering an application for emergency support, the Home Office need to assess if that is the case for you now. The Home Office needs to take urgent action to address this situation,” she said. I had nowhere to run to. On the existence of the camp in Calais and the living conditions: “That there are unofficial migrant camps at the border of two of Europe’s wealthiest nations is a matter of serious regret and concern….It is clear that there are many people in these camps entitled to humanitarian protection or refugee status, including some who should have their claims processed in the UK.”. The Home Office is considering permitting the use of nets to prevent migrants from crossing the Channel in small boats to the UK to claim asylum, … Want an ad-free experience?Subscribe to Independent Premium. We run a free asylum helpline available 24/7/365 and accessible to all asylum seekers in the UK. About Migrant Help: Migrant Help is a leading charity that has been established for over 50 years and delivers a range of support and advice services to migrants across the UK. Vulnerable crime victims with insecure immigration status … On the unaccompanied children in Calais with family members in the UK: “We agree with the Bishop of Durham that the 157 unaccompanied children already in Calais who have family members in the UK “should already have arrived” in the UK. This section outlines the services Migrant Help provides to asylum seekers in the United Kingdom and how to access them. A recent communication from Migrant Help outlining steps they are taking is attached. Help and advice. I was just waiting to hear somebody say ‘hello’. The Home Office system for processing such referrals, deciding whether someone is actually a victim and providing support is called the National Referral Mechanism (NRM). “Asylum seekers who would otherwise be destitute are provided with free, fully furnished accommodation and financial support while applications are considered.”. Read our full mailing list consent terms here. The Home Office failed to stop a rise in migrant boats crossing the English Channel before it was too late, an independent inspector has said. Please be respectful when making a comment and adhere to our Community Guidelines. A person is “destitute” if they do not have adequate accommodation or any means of obtaining it, or if they have adequate accommodation, but cannot meet their other essential living needs. Moria camp fire: Now is the time for action. Alex Cunningham, MP for Stockton North, who raised the issue in the House of Commons last week, accused the government of “failing to ensure their new contract works for the people it’s there to serve”. Ministers are being urged to act after it emerged asylum seekers, including single mothers with babies, have been living in “appalling” conditions for weeks on end due to “drastically increased” waiting times for the new contractor to respond to complaints. EU countries must do more to protect these highly vulnerable young people. The first duty of the government is to keep citizens safe and the country secure. Charities said that in the two months since Migrant Help took over the contract, living conditions for asylum seekers had become 'much worse', Asylum seekers left in property with fallen ceiling due to 'failing' new Home Office contract, Veecca Smith Uka (second right) with her three children aged 12, 15 and nine, One woman said she and her two-year-old son had to endure two weeks without heating and hot water, {{#verifyErrors}} {{message}} {{/verifyErrors}} {{^verifyErrors}} {{message}} {{/verifyErrors}}, Asylum seekers left destitute due to 'failing' Home Office contract, Government ‘failing asylum seekers housed in degrading accommodation’, Asylum seekers 'placed in dirty housing that fails to meet needs', Asylum waiting times at record high, figures show, You may not agree with our views, or other users’, but please respond to them respectfully, Swearing, personal abuse, racism, sexism, homophobia and other discriminatory or inciteful language is not acceptable, Do not impersonate other users or reveal private information about third parties, We reserve the right to delete inappropriate posts and ban offending users without notification. “I tried to call Migrant Help but they don’t pick up the phone. 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