Homelessness and Refugees

Why is homelessness an increasing issue for refugees?

When an individual is successful in their asylum application, and granted ‘leave to remain’ status, they are required to leave the accommodation provided to people seeking asylum. Standard procedure should be for people to receive a letter giving 28 days notice of eviction, but in reality, people can get as little as 7 days’ notice. In this period, people are expected to find new accommodation and move out.[1]

It is worth noting that even the 28 days’ notice, which is very little time anyway, is incompatible with the Universal Credit system, through which most people’s housing costs are met, as this has a wait time of at least 5 weeks before the first payment of a new claim. To add further complication, currently the notice of decision for the asylum claim is often not recognised as sufficient evidence to enable people to apply for housing and other support. In order to apply for rented housing from a private landlord, individuals usually need to be able to provide proof of 6 months employment. Asylum seekers are unable to do paid work. Yet to find employment, individuals need a permanent address. This presents an impossible ‘Catch-22’ situation, in already difficult and stressful circumstances, and is a prime cause of homelessness.

Read more on the Joint Public Issues Team site.

Comments are closed.