Ukrainian Refugees (Support)

– in the Scottish Parliament at on 8 September 2022.

Alert me about debates like this

Photo of Fulton MacGregor Fulton MacGregor Scottish National Party

7. To ask the Scottish Government in what ways it will continue to ensure refugees arriving from Ukraine will be provided with adequate shelter and support on arrival in Scotland. (S6O-01338)

Photo of Neil Gray Neil Gray Scottish National Party

The Scottish Government’s priority is to ensure that displaced people arriving from Ukraine are able to stay in appropriate temporary accommodation and get the right support, ahead of moving into safe, sustainable longer-term accommodation.

Welcome hubs across Scotland continue to provide immediate support, such as healthcare, language support, clothes, food and trauma support, as well as access to temporary welcome accommodation.

We are taking significant action to increase our temporary accommodation capacity, including the chartering of two passenger ships. We are boosting our matching system to maximise the number of people who can be placed with volunteer hosts who have completed the necessary safeguarding checks.

Photo of Fulton MacGregor Fulton MacGregor Scottish National Party

Along the same lines as the previous question from Sarah Boyack, I note that it is important that people who come here get as much support as possible. Therefore, can the minister provide an update on the increased support that local charities in my constituency, Coatbridge and Chryston, are likely to receive in order to manage the increased workload that is associated with the arrival of people from Ukraine and with helping them to settle in the local community?

Photo of Neil Gray Neil Gray Scottish National Party

I thank Fulton MacGregor for his positive engagement with the work that is going on in his constituency and across North Lanarkshire to provide new long-term accommodation for those who have been displaced from Ukraine.

The engagement between the Scottish Government, local parliamentarians including Fulton MacGregor and Clare Adamson and local authorities will be important. We fund third sector interfaces to provide single points of support for third sector organisations, with one in each local authority area. The TSIs have been heavily involved in co-ordinating efforts to welcome and settle people who have been displaced from Ukraine.

Local authorities are also given funding to support activities to welcome displaced people. They can decide how best to use those funds, taking into account local circumstances and needs. Local authorities may choose to use some of that funding to contract with third sector organisations in order to increase their support.

The refurbishment of up to 200 homes in North Lanarkshire, supported by £5 million of Scottish Government funding, is an example of our commitment to providing safe and sustainable accommodation. As always, my door is open to Fulton MacGregor and others to discuss any further support that might be required.