Government launches refugee resettlement scheme

20 Jun 19

A new global resettlement scheme for vulnerable refugees is being created from next year, replacing the current programmes and welcoming in around 5,000 more refugees in the UK.

Home Secretary Sajid Javid announced on Monday that the new initiative will consolidate the Vulnerable Persons’ Resettlement Scheme, the Vulnerable Children’s Resettlement Scheme and the gateway protection programme into a single scheme.

Refugees will also be taken in from beyond the Middle East and Africa, where the current focus is.

The UK will aim to resettle refugees at current levels, adding to the nearly 16,000 refugees who have already found safety here since 2015, he said.

The new programme will be simpler to operate, he added, and aim to provide greater consistency in the way refugees are resettled.

The home secretary also announced that a new process for emergency resettlement will be developed, providing a faster route to resettlement where lives are at risk

The community sponsorship scheme, which enables community groups to directly welcome and support refugees in the UK, will continue. Refugees resettled under this new community-led scheme will be in addition to the government commitment.

“Since 2016, Britain has resettled more refugees from outside Europe than any other EU state – and it’s vital we continue to do all we can to help the world’s most vulnerable,” Javid said.

The success of resettlement in the UK has been achieved working in partnership with over 300 local authorities, who are participating in delivering the current schemes.

The Local Government Association said that councils will receive initial one-year funding to deliver the scheme at the same level. This is £8,520 for adults and £13,020 for a child aged five to 18 in the first year.

It said it was pleased the government has confirmed it will continue the resettlement scheme after 2020 but that ministers needed to address long-term funding for the scheme in its Spending Review.

 “We look forward to continue to work with government and other partners to make sure all new arrivals get the support they need to settle into their new communities. Clear links need to be made across all the programmes that resettle asylum seekers, refugee families and children to make sure there is enough funding for all new arrivals building new lives in the UK,” a spokesman said.


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