[UK] Kent inspectors find wet and cold migrants held in cramped containers


Hundreds of wet and cold migrants were forced to spend hours in cramped containers on a “rubble-strewn building site” after arriving in the UK on small boats, a report has revealed.

In a rare insight into how newly arrived asylum seekers are treated by authorities, prison inspectors visited Tug Haven in Dover, where migrants are first taken from the beach or sea, and found a shortage of dry clothing and other basic supplies.

Images show migrants queueing at Tug Haven surrounded by rubble and temporary fencing. Windowless shipping containers were used to hold the arrivals.

More than 7,400 people have arrived in the UK in small boats this year, according to analysis by PA Media, nearly four times as many as in 2019, with a record 416 arriving on a single day on 2 September. All migrants are taken to Tug Haven for “processing” before heading to other short-term facilities. On the day of the inspection, 200 people arrived.

The chief inspector of prisons, Peter Clarke, said the numbers were no excuse for the conditions at Tug Haven and other sites, and criticised the Home Office for failing to plan “for what must have been a predictable increase” in arrivals from across the Channel.


Source: https://www.theguardian.com/uk-news/2020/oct/23/kent-inspectors-find-wet-and-cold-migrants-held-in-cramped-containers

Publication: The Guardian

Writer: Jamie Grierson