New Clause 27 - Asylum dispersal strategy

Part of Nationality and Borders Bill – in a Public Bill Committee at 3:00 pm on 4th November 2021.

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Photo of Tom Pursglove Tom Pursglove Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Ministry of Justice and Home Office) 3:00 pm, 4th November 2021

I am grateful to the hon. Gentleman. I want to pick up on a few of the points that he raised. In relation to Napier, as I have said previously, we have seen several improvements recently: offering all residents covid vaccinations and personal cleaning kits, the introduction of NGOs on the site to provide assistance and advice, free travel to medical appointments and dentistry services or for meetings, sports and recreation. Those significant improvements have been made since the court judgment was handed down.

Hotels are provided as a contingency because of the lack of availability of other accommodation, but it is important to make the point that those are not accommodation centres. On the unaccompanied asylum-seeking children situation, it is difficult to comment on individual cases and a hotel in the hon. Gentleman’s constituency—I do not have the specifics to hand—but I can say that, broadly, the UASC, but not other children, would be accommodated in a hotel. That is my understanding of the situation.

On a broader point, we had a significant debate on new clause 2 and dispersal accommodation, where I set out the steps that the Government are taking to try to address that. That is being considered, and I refer Members to what I said before.