William Eichler 11 January 2018

Council ‘struggling’ to resettle refugees

A Welsh authority is struggling to rehouse Syrian refugees because of a shortage of suitable housing.

In a report on the progress of Conwy council’s participation in the Syrian Vulnerable Persons Resettlement Scheme (SVPRS), the council warned they were ‘experiencing difficulties in securing suitable accommodation’ for refugees.

The authority aimed to receive five families in 2016/17. However, they have only accepted two Syrian families containing six individuals in total, while two more decided not to travel to the area.

Conwy stresses it is ‘committed to receiving further families’, but warns its Housing Services are experiencing difficulties in securing affordable accommodation in the private rented sector.

‘There is a limited availability of suitable properties available at the Local Housing Allowance levels due to the demand on the sector,’ the report states.

SVPRS was launched in January 2014, and is the first resettlement programme run by the UK to target support for refugees specifically on the basis of their vulnerability.

Then Prime Minister David Cameron committed the UK to settling 20,000 people by 2020.

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