Home Office statement regarding dispersal delays:

From the start of the COVID-19 pandemic lockdown period, accommodation moves had to be halted wherever possible and our usual dispersal system was suspended. We and our accommodation providers have taken steps to ensure that people’s needs are met in all forms of initial accommodation. However, this has also resulted in having very considerable numbers of people awaiting dispersal accommodation. This is not an issue affecting asylum accommodation alone, local authorities also have very large numbers of people in emergency accommodation, who will need to be moved on. Alongside the lasting impacts of the pandemic, we are dealing with unprecedented pressures on the asylum system. There is a shortage of local housing accommodation for all due to the significant increase in those arriving in the UK seeking protection, alongside the need to meet the existing needs of those already within the UK who have been on housing waiting lists for considerable periods of time. Whilst we accept that hotels do not provide a long-term solution, they do offer safe, secure and clean accommodation while you wait to be moved to dispersal accommodation. We and our providers are presently taking steps to secure as much dispersal accommodation as we can. We are sorry not to be able to give you any clear indication at this stage of how long it may take before the housing provider will be able to move you on to dispersal accommodation, and we appreciate this may be disappointing. However, we would like to reassure you that we are ensuring moves are conducted in a fair manner as dispersal accommodation becomes available. Your housing provider will be in touch with you once your dispersal is due to take place. Accommodation is provided on a no-choice basis, however if you feel that your current accommodation is inadequate or not meeting your individual needs, please provide supporting evidence to Migrant Help, who will share this with the Home Office for consideration.

Migrant Help are not able to provide an update on your dispersal.

Your housing provider will be in touch with you at least five days before your dispersal (move into longer-term accommodation) is due to take place. They will:

  • Explain the dispersal processes.
  • Confirm the date and time of your transport to your accommodation.
  • Tell you whether the accommodation that you are moving to is dispersal accommodation (long term) or temporary accommodation.
  • Tell you the length of time that you are expected to be in this accommodation (if it is temporary).
  • Give you helpful information about the area you are moving to.
  • Tell you where you can use your Aspen card in the area you are moving to.

The system of moving people into longer term dispersal accommodation was disrupted by the lockdown during the COVID19 pandemic. This means that there are still considerable numbers of people waiting to be moved from their initial accommodation into longer term accommodation.

The Home Office and their providers are presently taking steps to secure as much dispersal accommodation as they can. They are working to make sure that moves are conducted in a fair manner, once appropriate accommodation becomes available.