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> Asylum Seekers Face Glasgow Exodus, Breakdown in government deal causes crisis
GG
post 14th Nov 2010, 11:19pm
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Up to 1300 asylum seekers currently resident in Glasgow could be forced to leave the city as early as this week after the UK Border Agency (UKBA) said it would no longer pay Glasgow City Council to house them. The dramatic move follows a breakdown in the deal, currently worth almost 10m annually, which saw Glasgow take tens of thousands of asylum seekers since 2000 under the UK Government's asylum dispersal scheme.

The Home Office last week cancelled the contract with the city council to house and support asylum seekers because, it claims, the council sought an increase of almost 50% in the funding over two years from the government body.

According to one Glasgow MSP, Anne McLaughlin, asylum seekers had already received letters instructing them to prepare themselves for relocation to other areas in Sotland outside Glasgow.

Ms McLaughlin said:
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"I have been contacted by teachers, support workers and asylum seekers all desperately worried by this news. This happened only on Friday and already asylum seekers are getting letters telling them to pack two suitcases ready to leave Glasgow.

Their children are settled in school here and they are just to be plucked out of their communities and sent away. Further disruption will also be caused to those receiving medical help for physical and mental health needs. Many are single mothers with young children who now have to settle somewhere else.

I am shocked at the way people are being treated and call on both sides to get back to negotiations instead of needlessly disrupting the lives of children and families."

In an unexpected twist to the stand-off between the government agency and Scotland's biggest local authority, an un-named 'senior political source' told The Herald over the weekend of their suspicion that the Home Office wants to reduce overall numbers of asylum seekers in Glasgow because of the public outcry when they are removed.

The source said:
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"Over the years we’ve had the Dungavel protests, the Ay family, the Glasgow Girls, Precious Mhango, and the demonstrations about the dawn raids. This doesn’t happen elsewhere in the UK and you’ve got to ask whether it is less hassle for UKBA to have Glasgow’s asylum seekers elsewhere."

A Glasgow City Council spokesman said:
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"It's a matter of great regret that the UKBA has terminated its contract for the council to receive asylum seekers. Asylum seekers have brought welcome diversity to the city and added new life to many of our communities.

We have made numerous attempts to renegotiate the contract since numbers fell below contractually accepted levels but the UKBA has refused to accept our position. We can't subsidise another public body as they seek to fulfil their legal duties. A local authority would be acting beyond its powers if it did so."

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GG
post 14th Nov 2010, 11:28pm
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If you wish to comment on this story please remember that asylum seekers (and their families) are some of the most vulnerable members of our society. Please be considerate and respectful in your comments, mindful that many of these very unfortunate people are fleeing unspeakable horror in the countries of their birth.

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Jupiter
post 15th Nov 2010, 12:53am
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Ive just watched an 18th century TV drama called Garrows Law involving a case (I believe based on fact) where a large number of slaves from Africa were thrown off a ship because they were costing too much.
Then I read this report and it looks as though the people caught in the middle of this situation are being treated in a similar manner and being uprooted,I assume before their asylum applications have been processed for financial reasons.
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TeeHeeHee
post 15th Nov 2010, 12:55am
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I don't know the political ins and outs, or the local feeling, of the asylum seekers billeted in Glasgow but my own feelings are that if families are given asylum in Glasgow and have nestled into their communities with their children attending schools then they cannot be blamed for feeling that the City of Glasgow is caring, and being responsible, for them.
The City of Glasgow should maintain it's care for these families.
Glasgow should go to the line with the Home Office on this.
Just an opinion of course.


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Jazzsaxman
post 15th Nov 2010, 01:42am
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The votes say what the majority think.
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weebren3
post 15th Nov 2010, 05:48am
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I believe,yes under bad area's of the world should be given safety in any part of the country of scotland,just as long as they begin with our own poverty,health issues and people who are in need of jobs etc. Then maybe we could give more of ourselves to help with needs.I dont no of any in Glasgow who would not care to give the shirt off there backs to lend A hand. It is A touchy subject and I wish everyone well with the outcome.
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*Guest*
post 15th Nov 2010, 06:17am
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I used to stay in Glasgow for about 2 years. Now I am in my own country China. I think for those bad-areas people, they should have more jobs to do. It is better for them to make their own lives instead of raised by the council. What do you think?
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irrie
post 15th Nov 2010, 08:25am
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Surely these families esp.childrens lives have been disrupted enough if they were led to believe that hey could settle in Glasgow or anywhere else for that matter then thats the way it should be. If the powers that be want to make different rules for new settlers thats different but to make kids leave their schools and pals is just plain wrong in my opinion
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boots
post 15th Nov 2010, 08:34am
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I agree with what Tee hee hee has said and don't think I have anything to add except to say I am disgusted that people are being used as pawns in a standoff between two levels of government.

PS Thank you THH
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jcjamieson
post 15th Nov 2010, 08:37am
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I agree with you all the way ! Britain is too soft believing all the sob stories and granting asylum.
I'd get rid of the lot of them. We have too many of our own waiting for houses and needing help but it seems to make the Government and Council feel like saints giving "the poor asylum seekers" houses, benefits and all that's going.
As soon as they settle in they seem to want to implement the laws they had supposedly fled from to be implemented here!
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Melody
post 15th Nov 2010, 08:48am
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I think that this is absolutely shocking. Many of these families are already well settled with children in school. Many of these children and young people have already suffered unspeakable horrors in their own countries and are very high academic achievers they are a credit to their families. Whatever happened to big hearted Glasgow, I'm ashamed to have this done in my name. We are watching the destruction of all that is good in our country in this current climate. A current climate which is not the fault of the ordinary person in the street.
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ashfield
post 15th Nov 2010, 09:23am
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I completely agreed with your sentiments Melody, is it just a coincidence that this issue coincides with the demolition of the Red Road flats where many of the asylum seekers are housed?


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**red rooster**
post 15th Nov 2010, 09:36am
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Why was the council asking for an increase of 50% from a government who are heavily in debt?
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*Guest*
post 15th Nov 2010, 09:50am
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Sorry, charity begins at home.
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Melody
post 15th Nov 2010, 10:01am
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I wouldn't be at all surprised Ash. This so called government are capable of anything.
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