THEWLISS CONDEMNS UK GOVERNMENT OVER WASTED SPENDING

HOME OFFICE WASTED £3.4 MILLION ON DEVELOPING SITES THEY WILL NOT USE

Alison Thewliss, the SNP’s Home Affairs Spokesperson, has condemned the UK Government after a new report was released relating to asylum accommodation spending.

The report released today by the National Audit Office entitled ‘Investigation into asylum accommodation’ found that in the financial year to March 2024, the Home Office expects to spend £4.7 billion on asylum support, including £3.1 billion on hotels.

The report also highlights that in December 2023, the Home Office paid £274 million for up to 64,000 beds in hotels, 45,800 of which were being used.

By the end of March 2024, the Home Office expects to have spent at least £230 million on developing four large sites.

According to the report, the Home Office has also incurred losses of at least £3.4 million developing sites that it will not use.

It was highlighted in the report that while the Home Office may have made progress in its plans to reduce the number of hotels in use, a significant sum of money has been wasted.

Commenting, Alison Thewliss MP said:

“The Home Office has squandered a scandalous sum of money through it’s mismanagement of the asylum accommodation estate. The repeated claim by Ministers that controversial sites like the Bibby Stockholm barge, Wethersfield and Scampton would save money have been exposed as fallacy by this National Audit Office report. 

“Officials have acted in haste to meet political targets, and public funds have been filling the coffers of private companies, with very little by way of oversight. 

“The Home Office must focus instead on processing asylum cases and allowing those who have come to our shores for sanctuary to get on with rebuilding their lives, rather than leaving them languishing indefinitely in unsuitable and expensive accommodation.”

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