Channel Migrants Reportedly Staying at UK Taxpayer-Funded Hotels Worth $169 a Night
11:24 GMT 08.01.2022 (Updated: 15:17 GMT 28.05.2023)
Last year, a record 28,431 migrants crossed the English Channel to illegally enter the UK, triple the figure for all of 2020.
Some Channel migrants
are staying in four-star hotel rooms in the UK worth £125 ($169) a night, paid for by British taxpayers, according to leaked data obtained by The Sun
The newspaper cited Conservative lawmaker Tom Hunt as saying that "at a time when lots of people are struggling to get by, to heat their homes and to put food on their tables, they are going to deeply resent people who have come here illegally being put up in three and four-star hotels".
He added that "at the very least — if we cannot offshore-process asylum-seekers — we need detention centres, not nice hotels".
A Home Office spokesperson, in turn, insisted that the hotels were used only as a last resort.
"Due to an unprecedented rise in demand, we have had to use temporary accommodation such as hotels across the UK to manage demands. We are working to end the use of hotels in the asylum estate", the spokesperson claimed. In all, there are over 18,000 migrants in accommodation across Britain.
A Home Office minister earlier said that the government was "reforming" its approach to the migration issue and introducing tougher asylum rules.
Refugee charities, for their part, asserted that Downing Street's "dangerous and callous policy" would lead to more migrant arrivals and drownings.
30 November 2021, 11:18 GMT
Clare Moseley, founder of the charity Care4Calais, described the migrants as "some of the most vulnerable people in the world, having lost family members in bloody conflicts, suffered horrific torture, and inhumane persecution".
When compared to 2020, the number of refugees who illegally crossed the English Channel in small boats to reach the UK tripled last year, with arrivals standing at 28,431. On 24 November 2021, at least 27 people died as their small boat sank in the Channel.
The same month saw a new record for a single day, when 1,185 people reached British shores on board 33 boats. More than 60 migrants have already made the Channel crossing in 2022.