Thousands of Afghans stuck in UK hotels after fleeing Taliban: report

Thousands of Afghans stuck in UK hotels after fleeing Taliban: report
At least 12,000 refugees remain in temporary accommodation across the UK and are unable to access vital services.
2 min read
16 February, 2022
Some 16,000 Afghan refugees who left Afghanistan after the Taliban takeover are in the UK [Getty]

Afghan refugees are stuck in hotels across the UK just weeks after a minister admitted there was no structure to provide them with more sustainable housing.

In December, the UK's Afghan resettlement minister, Victoria Atkins, said over 4,000 out of 16,000 Afghan refugees escaping the Taliban had either been resettled or been matched with accommodation. The statistic has not changed since then, according to The Guardian.

Currently, 12,000 Afghan refugees are housed in hotel accommodation that is unsuitable for families and victims of trauma, which costs the government £1.2 million a day.

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Afghans in hotels are unable to access support such as community integration schemes, which are only available to settled refugees through their councils. The Home Office gives £20,520 to councils per year in resettlement money for such schemes.

“We are exploring all options to ensure families who move out of bridging hotels into self-arranged accommodation receive the appropriate support”, Atkins told The Guardian.

“Due to an unprecedented cross-government effort, and in partnership with local authorities and the private rented sector, we have already matched or are matching approximately 4,000 evacuees to homes.", she added.

She urged that the government will "pursue every avenue to secure permanent homes so Afghan families can settle and rebuild their lives. Afghans recognised as having a legal right to reside in the UK are immediately entitled to access essential services including education, NHS healthcare, employment opportunities and universal credit.”