Asylum Seekers & Refugees
Refugees and Asylum Seekers Advisor - Jackie Coutts Email Jackie
Entering 2012, there were about 300 asylum seekers accommodated in Inner City Bradford. Most are either waiting for a decision regarding their application or are in the appeal process. They come from countries such as Iraq, Iran, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Congo and China.
Some may have lost their claim for asylum but the Home Office believes it is not possible to return them at this time. There are also an unknown number of people who have lost their claim for asylum and do not have any housing or financial support. The Appeal Court for the Yorks and Humberside region is at Thornbury in Bradford.
Church in the World is working in partnership with Beacon (Bradford Ecumenical Asylum Concern) to provide three main services
CHAT: Provides refreshments and a friendly ear to people who are waiting for their Appeal Hearing at Thornbury – it can be a long wait for some. This currently runs 2 days a week but will cover more days if there are enough volunteers.
McKenzie Friends: This gives non legal advice to people who are unable to get a Legal Aid solicitor. There is a team of 16 volunteers and last year we dealt with 60 referrals. The next training for new volunteers is on 11 November 11.
Hosting Project: Places destitute asylum seekers in the homes of volunteers. There are currently seven people being supported in this way. More hosts are always needed as there is a big demand.
Abigail Housing is a West Yorkshire-based charitable company dedicated to providing housing to people made homeless at the end of the asylum process. This includes those who have been refused but cannot reasonably return to their country of origin and those given refugee status who have to leave their NASS housing.
Bradford New Arrivals Group CIW also has a representative on this partnership of service providers and policy makers who aim to respond to the changing needs and aspirations of the district and to ensure the district is able to provide accessible and practical services to support the settlement of new arrivals.
Bradford City of Sanctuary City of Sanctuary is a movement to build a culture of hospitality for people seeking sanctuary in the UK. Our goal is to create a network of towns and cities throughout the country which are proud to be places of safety, and which include people seeking sanctuary fully in the life of their communities.
Destitution Concern Bradford is a local voluntary group comprised of those working with asylum seekers and others facing destitution. DCB is a forum for sharing information and research and has recently been awarded funding to identify actual numbers of those in destitution in the district.
Abigail Housing: http://www.abigailhousing.org.uk
Bradford Ecumenical Asylum Concern: http://www.beaconbradford.org/
City of Sanctuary: http://www.cityofsanctuary.org/bradford
National Coalition of Anti-Deportation Campaigns: http://www.ncadc.org.uk
Refugee Council: http://www.refugeecouncil.org.uk
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