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Wednesday, November 8, 2023

Our Frontline network partner, Praxis, provides expert support to migrants and refugees in the UK. As a leading expert in supporting migrants facing homelessness, Praxis also works with local councils and frontline support workers, providing advice, training, and sharing best practice.

Praxis have been running the Pan-London Migrant Frontline Network since 2016. The Network offers support to frontline staff who work with people experiencing homelessness in London related to immigration status. The Pan-London Migrant Frontline Network facilitates quarterly events, which provide a regular opportunity to bring together frontline workers in London to network, share expertise, and experience, and link to decision makers.

Subscribe here to find out about future events and activities being organised to connect with staff across London on migrant related focuses.

Introducing the Praxis Slack Channel

Praxis launched a Slack channel last year to support staff working on the frontline to seek 2nd tier advice around immigration related cases. The channel can provide responses to more hands on, or complex questions frontline staff might have. It has been set up for frontline professionals to get expert advice to assist them in their work at a time that is convenient for them.

Event: Impact of Changes to Asylum Policy and Practice on Homelessness

Praxis recently hosted an event with speakers from the GLA and Chartered Institute of Housing to discuss the likely impact of Streamlined Asylum Processing on the refugee community. The event highlighted the following issues with the new practice:

  • All correspondence is in English, meaning recipients may not fully understand what needs to be done. In fact, applicants’ contact details may have changed, so they may not even be receiving correspondence.
  • Successful applicants only have 28 days to vacate their accommodation. Clearsprings manages the properties in London & the South where refuges are housed and are meant to advise local authorities of decisions. They are failing to do so, resulting in an increase in people sleeping rough. In addition, where previously the 28-day notice period did not start until the accommodation provider sent a letter of notice of discontinuation of support, recently the Home Office has instituted a practice of the 28-day period starting from the point at which a Home Office decision on the case is made. People often do not receive these decisions promptly and it does not currently explicitly state that support will be discontinued after 28 days.
  • There is a lack of available data for local authorities on where applicants are based, making it harder for them to offer the required support to prevent refugees in their areas becoming homeless. Even for those who are deemed to be in priority need (usually those with children under the age of 18 or significant health issues) there is a lack of suitable accommodation and people are often uprooted and sent to areas outside of London.

As a result of these issues, it is likely that there will be an increase in the number of people in the refugee community experiencing homelessness.

The GLA presented these concerns to the Life off the Streets Executive Board who in turn will write to the Home Office to raise these concerns.

To help you get your head around these changes at speed, Praxis has created this Asylum Support Discontinuation - Resources and Guidance

Find out more about Praxis's vital work giving advice, providing support, and campaiging so that migrants and refugees in th UK can live with safety, dignity and respect.

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