UK reveals migrant plans

Lazy eyes listen


According to a proposal published on Wednesday, the UK government intends to house asylum seekers in decommissioned army barracks in order to reduce the cost of temporary housing for migrants.

The proposal, detailed on Wednesday in the House of Commons by UK Immigration Minister Robert Jenrick, comes amid controversial plans by Prime Minister Rishi Sunak’s Conservative government to reduce cross-channel migration, with Jenrick citing a yearly bill of £2.3 billion ($2.8 billion) currently being paid to temporarily house migrants while asylum claims are processed.

Jenrick stated that disused military sites will be “scaled up over the coming months and will collectively provide accommodation to several thousand asylum seekers through repurposed barracks blocks and portacabins.”

However, he refused to confirm UK media reports that they planned to house migrants on barges, instead stating that the Home Office is “exploring the possibility” of housing asylum seekers on vessels “as they are in Scotland and the Netherlands.”

It comes amid reports that Home Office officials have warned that accommodating migrants on barges or ships may cost more than hotels.

Since taking office in October, Prime Minister Sunak has made reducing illegal migration one of his top priorities. He has faced criticism from political opponents for introducing his Illegal Migration Bill, which proposes, among other things, relocating migrants from the United Kingdom to Rwanda.

The bill also significantly restricts migrants’ ability to object to their removal from the UK, and places a renewed emphasis on the office of Home Secretary Suella Braverman to “remove illegal entrants,” which critics claim violates international law and has been condemned by a number of human rights organisations, as well as the European Union and the Council of Europe.

The UK’s main opposition party, the Labour Party, has accused the government of “an admission of failure.” Shadow Home Secretary Yvette Cooper told MPs on Wednesday that the plans came only after several years of demonstrating an inability to reduce cross-channel migration and the use of hotels as temporary accommodation.