The aim was to document the experiences and knowledge of midwives working with asylum-seeking women accessing NHS maternity services in order to in improve practice and policy.
Accepted research techniques of sampling and analysis were utilised, and thematic analysis was applied to the data, and findings grouped into 2 main themes and 4 sub-themes. An ‘audit trail’ of influences, events, actions and decisions taken was made. However, the authors acknowledge that this was a small scale exploratory study and therefore cannot be representative.
The article concludes that the considerable knowledge and skills that are required to providing maternity services to women asylum seekers is a specialist role, and that the study demonstrates the need for better training and support in this area, particularly when the birth rate is rising. They also point to the personal and emotional cost of providing support.
The following recommendations were made:
The Practising Midwife
The aim was to provide an evidence base to better inform and influence the strategic agenda of migrant third sector organisations in Leeds, through a collective articulation of the key facts about migrants in the city and the experiences of organisations working with them.
The main objective was to document the health of third sector organisations working with migrants in the city of Leeds and to promote awareness of the key issues facing them in the current climate.
Within this broad objective, secondary objectives were to provide a demographic context to migrant communities in Leeds, to map the number of third sector organisations providing services to them, to gather qualitative and quantitative data on their current status, and identify the key issues for the cohort as a whole. It was intended as a supplement to the Leeds Migration Partnership report.
The information contained within the report was derived from two methodologies. The first provides a demographic analysis of migrant communities in Leeds through demographic sources such as the 2011 Census data on ethnicity, country of birth, language and identity as well as geographical location within the Leeds conurbation.
The authors surveyed 40+ organisations in the Leeds area which were listed on a Leeds City Council database as working directly with migrants. The survey was carried out using a paper based questionnaire, which asked recipients about issues such as:
Respondents were asked to provide information on their status now, and in the last 5 years. The authors received 19 completed questionnaires. This process was complemented by desktop research on a larger cohort of 122 organisations with similar remits in the city. Their details were sourced from the same Leeds City Council database.
The survey and desktop research was carried out during October 2013.
The analysis of the migrant population [section A] highlights that, like many other major cities in the UK, Leeds is experiencing rapid demographic change, partly driven by immigration. Using Census data, it shows that in the decade 2001-11, the number of residents born outside the UK nearly doubled, with the largest increase from Poland, although Pakistan remains the largest group numerically.
The assessment of the migrant third sector in Leeds [section B] concludes it is under significant pressure, due to major funding cuts from public sector sources and a notable decline in donations and fundraising, with funding applications subject to greater scrutiny and competition. This poses a serious risk to the majority of organisations – only 15% surveyed said they had financial security beyond April 2015.
Survey respondents noted that demand for support and assistance from migrants is increasing on third sector organisations, particularly in areas such as employability and skills.
The report identified a number of critical gaps in support. These were centred on advice, support and advocacy [including legal]; destitution; employment and skills; English language and interpreting/translation provision; health and mental health; housing and sector support. However, it also highlights the impact of changes to long term contracts, with national programmes ceasing, being re-commissioned for less, or mainstreamed.
The report concludes that significant gaps in services are likely to occur from December 2013 and may be critical by early 2015 as a direct result of reduced funding. This may include insufficient face to face advice services for particularly vulnerable migrants.
The aim of this study was to explore whether intergenerational knowledge and practice concerning breast feeding is affected by migration from Bangladesh to the UK.
Findings were structured by 4 analytical themes:
The research found that the impact of migration on the transmission of knowledge was often complex, but the findings concurred with other studies which emphasised how the maintenance of cultural traditions around breast feeding should be seen as important. The evidence indicates that the absence of such advice and guidance could compromise mothers’ ability to breast feed, as mothers did not have the opportunity to observe breast feeding practices, and were more likely to turn to other options [for example: bottle feeding, formula milk].
Migration could have a disruptive effect on such traditions, which the authors suggested occurred through 3 intersecting factors:
A better understanding of the how migration affects the transmission of knowledge and advice from grandmothers to younger mothers could help health professionals facilitate better family support for breast feeding. However, they caution against seeing ideas about breast feeding as fixed in either countries of origin or destination. The authors conclude that a family centred approach would be more beneficial than one just focused on the mother.
It is recommended that health professionals in the UK take account of the significant impact of information that is passed on [particularly in relation to breast feeding experiences of grandmothers’ in countries of origin] when working with new mothers, and that this information should be analysed in relation to practices in the UK.
The authors state that the issues raised merit further study to assess any wider implications for health policy and practice.
The findings are part of a larger qualitative study researching breast feeding among Bangladeshi women in the UK.
To evaluate the degree to which the inclusion of Roma communities has progressed, in order to inform broader policy across the EU.
The main objective was to gather qualitative, empirical data from both Roma and non Roma in 6 member states which would identify the experiences and needs of Roma; indicate how they were perceived by non Roma and consider the level of integration / segregation of the 2 communities. Research focused on paid work and employment, community relations, social welfare and social inclusion / exclusion.
The report forms the second part of a research project for the Roma SOURCE project. The first part was a rapid review of key materials relating to the integration and inclusion/exclusion of Roma in 6 EU countries. [Brown, Dwyer and Scullion, 2012]. Roma SOURCE was a partnership of 6 organisations, 1 in each EU state.
While the report acknowledged community relations include the full spectrum of experiences [from everyday neighbourliness to racist attack], overall it concludes Roma and non Roma do lead segregated and parallel lives.
While Roma and non Roma participants agreed that the social exclusion of many Roma communities persists, there were different perceptions why this was the case. Roma respondents blamed structural factors [for example, discrimination] but non Roma blamed what they termed the ‘dysfunctional behaviour’ of Roma, regarding them as lazy and unwilling to work. Non Roma viewed Roma as exploiters of welfare benefits, who were perceived as not having contributed to the system, but Roma felt poverty was the main factor in poor access to adequate education and housing.
A series of recommendations was aimed at policy makers mostly focus on challenging structural factors faced by Roma such as ingrained poverty, improving access to paid work and education, and ensuring equal treatment of Roma and non-Roma.
A second series of recommendations was aimed at agencies working in community based settings. These included actions to encourage better relationships between Roma and non-Roma, challenging of negative stereotypes, tackling poor housing conditions and the need for local government to have a coordinated approach to Roma inclusion.
Roma SOURCE [Sharing of Understanding Rights and Citizenship in Europe] project was co-funded by the European Union’s Fundamental Rights and Citizenship Programme.
The overall aim of the study was to address gaps in the knowledge about migrant Roma communities in the UK, in particular the size of the population. Additionally, the research aimed to gain an understanding of what contact local authorities had had with migrant Roma and what key issues and challenges they faced.
A specific place typology methodology was selected to estimate the population size of Roma communities across the UK. This technique uses datasets to identify places which have comparable demographic, economic, educational and physical attributes, which can then be used to predict certain trends likely to occur in similar locations. In this study comparisons for local authorities which did supply estimates were sought among those without data by assessing their similarity on an extensive set of variables, with the aim of identifying where Roma communities may be expected to reside, and in what number.
The report outlines the context for the research, placing it within wider UK and EU policy discussions and strategies. The subsequent structure of the report follows the thematic areas of the local authority questionnaire with chapters on levels of awareness of migrant Roma communities, engagement with migrant Roma in local areas; and perceptions of challenges and issues.
The findings are divided into: estimated size of the migrant Roma population in the UK; settlement in the UK; the engagement of migrant Roma with service areas; mobility of migrant Roma; and addressing migrant Roma settlement.
The primary conclusion is that the UK’s migrant Roma community is significant in size when compared to other Black and Minority Ethnic [BME] communities, and is likely to grow. An national estimate of at least 197,705 individuals was made, and within this the Yorkshire and Humber region was estimated to host 25,451.
Information from local authorities also shows that the migrant Roma population is mainly urban and located in areas that are already ethnically diverse. It was frequently reported that Roma communities were characterised by high mobility and presenting with complex needs. Several authorities reported the existence of a Roma population in their area but that they had little contact with the authorities. It was also noted that cuts to local authority budgets had reduced the number of workers engaging with Roma communities, and that important knowledge was being lost as a result.
In the absence of systematic and comprehensive data and information about the migrant Roma population in the UK, the authors recommend that this exercise is repeated regularly in order to document the population of migrant Roma and focus in on specific issues pertinent to areas such as age, gender and employment.
The authors also recommend that their place typology based approach to assessing population size could prove a valuable tool for future forecasting settlement patterns but caution that the figure proposed in this report is preliminary and that any similar survey in the future must be accompanied by direct statistical sampling in the absence of other sources. In general, more research is needed to understand the choices Roma make regarding settlement.
The research was undertaken by the Sustainable Housing & Urban Studies Unit at the University of Salford and funded by the Joseph Rowntree Charitable Trust.
The study aims to provide an overview of the causes and extent of forced labour in the UK, what the term means in a UK context, existing policy and legal frameworks and the current capacity to tackle it.
Interviews and focus groups were conducted with experts across the UK, including national stakeholders and frontline local service providers. There were also local stakeholder meetings in 3 areas, centred around Boston [Lincolnshire], Bristol and Dundee.
A literature review of UK publications on forced labour was also conducted.
The report indicates the term ‘forced labour’ is not always easily understood because of its interrelationship with trafficking, exploitation and slavery. A majority of the focus in research studies is on links to human trafficking which may result in an over-simplification of the idea of forced labour, by focusing on border security and immigration control. Forced labour needs to be seen as part of a continuum of exploitation, and in this regard the International Labour Organisation’s [ILO] definitions do not necessarily capture the complexity of the issue.
The evidence indicates migrant workers are the majority of victims of forced labour and labour exploitation, with a notable proportion from the A8/A2 countries of central and Eastern Europe. A range of existing studies have shown that the exploitative use of labour [including forced labour] is linked to structural factors, examples of which are the drive to force down costs, the widespread use of temporary agency workers, long supply chains which can hinder oversight and the extensive operation of cash in hand work, leaving workers without proof of income, and the associated benefits derived from legitimate employment [for example, tax credits etc].
The study finds that forced labour is not a policy priority, and while forced labour has been criminalised, conviction rates are low, and a ‘justice gap’ may be developing. The report suggests the low priority attached to the forced labour agenda is due to several factors, among which are the lack of professionals with specialist knowledge, a lack of funding to promote better awareness of workers’ rights and lack of clarity around forced labour itself.
The report contains recommendations for policy, business and employers and trade unions. A unified strategy is required at national Government level to tackle the issue of forced labour, which would encompass a range of measures, including a clear definition of forced labour, support programmes for employers and better guidance for the judiciary, as well as an assessment of the role of public and private sectors [for example, in monitoring supply chains]. Key to the success of such an approach is better and more available access to data on exploitation.
The authors also advocate for more detailed studies into in the labour market in what they term ‘high-risk industries’ [including food, construction and hospitality].
The research was funded by the Joseph Rowntree Foundation.
The aim of the summary was to highlight the key findings of a 2 year research study into forced labour experiences among refugees and asylum seekers.
Thirty people living in Yorkshire and Humber who had made claims for asylum in England were interviewed about their experiences of forced labour. They had worked in various sectors, including hospitality, domestic work, manufacturing, retail and construction. The sample included asylum seekers at entry to England, trafficked, and undocumented migrants.
A further 23 interviews were conducted with practitioners to provide supplementary information.
The survey used the International Labour Organisation’s [ILO] definition of forced labour, and the 11 indicators they developed to identify situations of forced labour.
The authors found that the most common experiences of those interviewed involving abuse perpetrated by employers or intermediaries included: the withholding of wages, excessively low pay and unacceptable working / living conditions. For some asylum seekers, enduring exploitative working conditions, including forced labour, was necessary to meet their and their families’ needs.
Working below minimum wage is normalised for this group and, despite often attempting to resist such conditions, their socio-legal status means that they often have no choice but to accept them. These migrants have little, perhaps no, opportunities to negotiate conditions. Domestic servitude, sexual exploitation, and care work were found to be the most exploitative of work carried out by trafficked migrants.
Extreme poverty was found to be the primary driver into exploitative work, with the most vulnerable groups being undocumented migrants and those refused asylum. Seeking work in these conditions can also lead to criminal convictions for the use of false documentation.
The authors propose 3 concepts to explain vulnerability to forced labour: unfreedom, precarity and socio-legal status.
The authors also highlight the limitations of the ILO’s classifications, particularly its narrow focus on the employer-employee relationship, which ignores wider social contexts.
Evidence from the interviews demonstrates that refugees and asylum seekers in the UK are at risk of being exploited through forced labour. The asylum system contributes to vulnerability to forced labour among refugees and asylum seekers by its restrictive rules on work and access to welfare.
The full report recommends that 5 key principles should guide activity on forced labour. These are to:
Separate recommendations are directed at 5 constituencies:
These include allowing all refugees to exercise their rights to family reunion, to end the destitution of failed asylum seekers, and to improve the training and awareness of a range of statutory and voluntary organisations, and better enforcement of the law [including the minimum wage].
The report was published by the University of Leeds and University of Salford. Funded by the Economic and Social Research Council.
The aim of this article is to present evidence that demonstrates A2/A8 migrant workers are being prioritised for employment by companies within the UK food industry, in preference to British domestic workers. It seeks to describe the operation of such a dynamic and explain how it has developed since EU enlargement in 2004 and 2007.
The author argues that a dualistic ‘good migrant worker’ and ‘bad local worker’ recruitment rhetoric has developed in the UK food growing/processing industry. They suggest this is due to perceptions by employers that [largely eastern European] migrants have a strong work ethic, as opposed to British workers who are perceived as lazy. In part, the author suggests this is because the temporary, low paid and unstable character of employment in the sector has led it to be regarded as such low status work in the UK that only very low skilled, poorly educated residents seek it out.
Conversely, it points out those A8/A2 migrants are particularly attractive and preferential to employers. Whole groups can be organised through agencies, which simplifies the recruitment process. But migrants are willing to take on employment in the sector precisely because they do not intend to stay in the long term, wanting to earn money rapidly to take ‘home’ or as a ‘stepping stone’ into another opportunity. This flexibility makes them particularly suitable, even apart from the fact that many are highly skilled/educated, which employers regard positively, particularly in contrast to local UK workers. However, retention rates are an issue, particularly after the migrant workers been in the UK for some time. This can be offset with new cohorts of workers so that a ‘revolving door’ of workers develops.
The overall consequence is that low-wage ‘migrant–local hiring queues’ have emerged. This dynamic sees UK workers habitually overlooked in favour of migrant workers with migrants seen as bringing ‘added value’, not least by keeping wages [and thus costs] down.
The author predicts that as time goes on migrants will be less likely to tolerate such low wage work, in part because long term experience of the UK job market will open other, more high status employment opportunities without the need for initial ‘stepping stones’ to provide income. This could present employers with problems hiring workers with the same level of ‘added value’. Macroeconomic trends are key: changes in exchange rates and economic growth among Eastern European nations are just two factors that may mean the flow of cheap labour from eastern Europe may be a time limited event.
The link between employer perceptions and the actual practices of low-wage labour recruitment should be further explored. Comparisons with other sectors of the economy and other countries to see if migrant–local hiring queues exist there too would be valuable, as would further study into the attitudes of migrant and would-be British workers to low-wage work as a complement to this study.
Population, Space and Place
This study forms part of a broader body of research carried out by the author looking at UK food production from the perspective of employers, labour market intermediaries [LMIs], regulators, and the workers themselves.
To improve access to and acceptance of Hepatitis B virus [HBV] testing among Chinese residents in Sheffield and estimate the rate of undiagnosed infection.
A local authority funded Chinese community centre in Sheffield was recruited to facilitate with the organisation of sessions and testing events. Information about the sessions was also published in local press, community locations, and GPs were informed of the initiative.
The sample was self-selected [that is, those residents who volunteered for testing]. A total of 229 people volunteered [102 males and 127 females] with a median age of 47. The ages of volunteers ranged from 15 to 86. As well as HBV testing, educational materials were provided containing information on transmission, prevention, treatment, and alcohol advice. Epidemiological and demographic information, which included knowledge of prior HBV status, immunisation, and family history, was collected via registration forms. Participants were also requested to provide feedback on the experience.
Those found to be positive for HBV were comprehensively assessed.
While all information provided was translated in order to reach the study’s target group, the reliance on a volunteer sample means that potentially hard to reach residents may not have had contact with the initiative, possibly introducing a bias in the results towards those who already were likely to engage with community services.
Ten men and 10 women were diagnosed with HBV, a prevalence of 8.7%. 13 men and 15 women were identified as having had a past infection, a prevalence of 12.2%. Women were 5 times more likely to self report past infection. Based on time of residence in the UK, the research team concluded that undiagnosed or untreated HBV can be present in both recent arrivals from China and long-term residents. However, it is acknowledged that volunteers were not asked about return visits to China, which may have been important to further understanding the prevalence in the UK Chinese population.
The research team noted that none of the female volunteers previously diagnosed with HBV had been referred to specialist services, suggesting a gap in knowledge in primary care services.
In terms of the services offered, the volunteers appeared to report positive experiences, with some specifically requesting that more screening be made available.
A number of recommendations are outlined relating to policy and practice, and the planning of outreach testing. These recommendations include the maintenance of confidentiality, translation difficulties, and tracing contacts. In addition, the authors suggest patient centred screening in local venues, and awareness of cultural factors which may act as barriers to accessing such services may assist better outcomes. Such an approach can also assist the distribution of health messages via friends and family networks.
The authors also recommend that their model be extended to Somali, Bangladeshi, Pakistani, and Eastern European populations, and the development of improved training and evaluation tools for healthcare and community workers.
Journal of Infection and Public Health
The paper aims to shed some light on the impact of
A8 migration on employment opportunities and housing provision in the inner-city communities that are host to many new migrant groups.
The qualitative data presented in this paper was generated in a study concerned with the needs, perceptions and experiences of A8 migrants and established communities in a northern English city. The study used purposive sampling to recruit 89 respondents. A8 migrants and established community members were recruited through contacts with local community centres. In total, 11 focus groups [6-9 respondents each], and 10 semi-structured interviews with key informants [for example recruitment agencies, employers, community support workers] were conducted. Three focus groups with A8 migrants [Polish men, Polish women and Slovak mixed gender]; one focus group with Roma migrants; 4 parallel focus groups with members of established West Indian, Pakistani and ‘white’ host communities in neighbourhoods that had experienced significant numbers of recent A8 migrants; and 3 focus groups with agencies involved in the provision and/or administration of local public services, [for example City Council, primary care trusts, housing providers and schools] were conducted.
The aim of this study was to assess the health needs of migrants in NE Lincolnshire [UK].
The report addresses migrant health, health services, communication and language barriers, employment, and education.
To examine the experiences of adult migrants affected by multiple exclusion homelessness [MEH] in 7 cities in the UK, and compare with non-migrant adults similarly affected.
The paper is based on the findings of an Economic and Social Research Council [ESRC] funded study entitled ‘Multiple Exclusion Homelessness Across the UK: A Quantitative Survey’. 1,286 adults were initially recruited from 7 cities in the UK, including Leeds, and asked to complete a ‘Census Questionnaire Survey’. The sample was recruited through ‘low-threshold’ services [see extra information below]. An extended survey was conducted with 452 of the initial sample who had experienced MEH.
Migrants were defined as people born outside the UK, who had migrated to the country aged 16 or older. Multiple Exclusion Homelessness was defined as having experienced homelessness [including temporary/unsuitable accommodation as well as sleeping rough] and one or more conditions described as ‘deep social exclusion’, which included:
Migrants were found to comprise 17% of all clients presenting to ‘low threshold services’ with experiences of MEH, with a significant concentration in London. 78% of all service users were male and those from migrant groups were, on average, younger than non-migrants.
Migrants with experience of MEH were more likely to have spent their adult life working in casual, short-term or seasonal work and also to have experienced more unemployment. This occurred despite being more likely to report having academic or vocational qualifications than non-migrants.
Fewer than half of the migrants interviewed were receiving benefits and they were more likely than non-migrants to receive money from paid work, charities, family and friends. Despite this, significantly more migrants reported not having received any money at all in the previous month. Migrants from Central and Eastern Europe were most likely among migrants as a whole to have experienced absolute destitution. Although those in the migrant group were more likely to have slept rough than non-migrants, the authors noted they were at considerably lower risk of other types of exclusion. Their first experience of homelessness typically occurred after arrival in the UK [82%] and they reported fewer of the known childhood risk factors associated with MEH.
Overall, migrants have a ‘lower overall ‘threshold’ of personal problems and associated support needs’ and migrant MEH is associated with welfare restrictions, a lower ability to navigate local services and limited levels of English, rather than the complex needs or childhood trauma which are often observed among British people experiencing MEH.
The reduced presence of historical risk factors in migrants [compared to non-migrants] experiencing MEH means that more tailored services need to be developed which focus on practical issues such as accessing benefits and improving language skills. Traditional homelessness services may therefore not have the necessary resources or skills to work with migrants affected by MEH.
The higher levels of education and qualifications among migrants indicate that with the right support, finding paid work may be possible. Finally, the authors reiterate previous calls for a pan-European response to the issue of MEH facing Central and Eastern European migrants.
‘Low-threshold’ refers to services which do not require users to meet certain conditions in order to qualify for access for example receiving specific benefits, nationality status etc. Soup runs, street outreach teams and drop-ins are examples.
The report examines the notion of community cohesion as it is understood by residents, particularly those whose origins are from the Yemen. The report derives from a United Kingdom case study as part of an international comparative research programme funded by an Australian Research Council Discovery Grant.
As well as a review of relevant policy documents and literature, the study included 5 interviews with Council employees. In addition, a short telephone interview was conducted with a member of Local Government Yorkshire and Humber, representing local authorities in the region. Thirteen interviews were undertaken with representatives of the voluntary, community and faith [VCF] sector and 2 with local academics knowledgeable in this field. A survey was undertaken with 100 residents from January to March 2010. Around half of the respondents were recruited in public places in the city centre and about 10 were conducted with professionals through contacts in their workplace. Around 40 were conducted on the street, in cafes and through door knocking in three localities. The resulting respondent profile included: 24% Muslim, 25% born outside the UK, 50% men and 47% were aged 21-35.
There has been a shift away from multicultural policies in the UK as a consequence of attention to a set of key new policy domains: equalities community cohesion and community involvement. Issues which were identified as barriers to integration included: lack of English; lack of access to employment; racism and discrimination and difficulties forming meaningful relationships with British people. The role of informal social networks and entrepreneurs were seen as significant in shaping integration. Partnerships between the local authority and third sector organisations were characterised as mainly existing through umbrella bodies or in personal relationships between community leaders and councillors. Recent anti-terrorism legislation, restrictions on migration, reduction in funding for English language tuition and the recent Prevent programme have undermined the potential for creating equality and multicultural respect.
Faith is seen as a key issue in managing cultural relations especially post 9/11 and faith organisations have now assumed an important role for both established and new minority group members in terms of protecting their interests. Faith, especially Islam [given the focus of the Prevent agenda] has received negative media attention, such as the issue of the wearing of the veil by some Muslim women. The centrality of community cohesion and the Prevent agenda highlight the enhanced role of communications, that of managing perceptions, the effects of negative media portrayals, improving the council’s relationships with community groups and all residents by promoting successes and gains in relation to diversity and equality. In the City, this approach to managing perceptions is seen as central to managing community tensions.
To explore the range of different uses of privately rented accommodation by migrants in the UK, placing it within the wider context of housing policy, to better inform such policy and practice.
The report collates current knowledge regarding the needs and experiences of migrants and the policies that affect their housing. No new data collection was conducted in informing the report. This includes data from a variety of surveys and case studies across the country, including the role of social landlords in South Yorkshire and Doncaster, and investigation of accommodation arrangements of migrant workers at a single workplace in North Yorkshire.
Migrants overwhelmingly reside in the private rented sector [PRS]. However this takes many forms; for example, asylum seekers housed by private agencies on behalf of government, migrant workers from EU states, non EU migrants on work visas or illegal migrant labourers.
Migrants often have a preference for PRS because of the flexibility it offers, and accommodation is often found through friends, agents or employers. This situation exists within a wider context of high demand for rental properties so that migrants may be in competition with UK born accommodation seekers, and other migrants. It is noted that low skilled, deprived migrants are often housed in poor quality housing without tenancy agreements and subject to exploitation. Therefore, the PRS market can benefit some migrant groups, but penalise others.
It is noted that little research has been done on this subject, and national datasets do not collect data on housing tenure among migrants. Recent reports have highlighted the high turnover of migrants within the PRS.
Changes in welfare rules [especially housing benefit], asylum policy and cuts to local authority housing budget have created, or magnified existing challenges, but the report offers a number of potential solutions.
These are grouped into four main sections:
The report also outlines in detail a range of other options such as using decommissioned public property, schemes to convert empty properties, and encouraging employers to take more responsibility for accommodation. Overall, it suggests while current statutory powers are sufficient, they should be enforced more rigorously.
The aim of the article was to assess if immigration controls determine what types of care work migrants select, and if immigration controls impact on the ability of such workers to exercise choice and control over their terms and conditions and their ability to leave employment.
The article was based on 56 in-depth interviews carried out with different categories of migrant care workers of foreign nationalities during 2007. The gender split was 49 females and 7 males, and interviewees were based in England: mainly London and the South East, the South West, North West, and Yorkshire and Humber.
The cohort was recruited to reflect several categories of migrant workers; those with unrestricted rights to work in the UK; those who were restricted to care work; those without right to work [for example, visa overstayers] in order to observe how this influenced decisions. Approaches were made to residential care homes and home care agencies, migrant community organisations, faith-based groups, trade unions. Snowball sampling was applied to obtain further recruits.
Other variables to the sample were the different types of employment found in the care sector in England: for example, direct employment by residential care homes, employment by home care agencies, direct employment by older people or their families. There was also an objective to ensure the main nationalities in the workforce of migrant carers were reflected in the sample. The author states a majority of foreign born care workers [74 per cent] are non-EEA nationals, subject to immigration controls, with the Philippines, India, Nigeria, Zimbabwe and South Africa all important sources. The remaining [26 per cent] have arrived from EEA countries. Written and verbal information on the research and on confidentiality and anonymity was provided to all prospective interviewees and Interviews were carried out in the first language of care workers [who had received translated information].
Choice and control for migrant care workers are circumscribed by immigration regulations, with non EEA nationals experiencing the greatest restrictions. This has implications for both their own social mobility and job security, but also for the care sector itself.
Journal of Social Policy
To highlight the exploitation of migrant workers in the United Kingdom and to provide policy recommendations in this field.
The article is a summary of the findings of 4 separate, but related, research reports on the living and working conditions of migrant workers in the UK, 2 of which relate to the Yorkshire and Humber region. These reports were based on research conducted in the UK between 2004 and 2010, undertaken by a team at the University of Hull, documenting the experiences of organisations working with migrant workers operating on the national, local, statutory and voluntary basis together with testimony from several hundred of migrant workers.
The article concludes with a range of policy recommendations. These include:
The study aims to explore how new temporary and circular migration trends influence the experiences and interactions that occur between new Accession 8 [
A8] migrants and host communities. The research looks at whether everyday encounters in both neighbourhood and work spaces serve to enhance or inhibit the building of ‘good relations’ between established communities and newly resident A8 migrants in a multicultural city in northern England.
The research was conducted in Leeds. In total, 89 people participated in the fieldwork. A series of focus groups and family interviews were held with members of 3, newly resident, A8 migrant groups. Participants were drawn from Polish, Slovak and Slovak Roma communities. Eight key informants who recruited, employed or acted as community support workers for A8 migrants were also interviewed. Additionally, 4 parallel focus groups were convened with members of the established West Indian, Pakistani and ‘white’ host communities in neighbourhoods that had recently experienced the arrival of significant numbers of A8 migrants. Finally, 3 focus groups were held with agencies involved in the provision and/or administration of local public services, for example, City Council services, primary care trusts, housing providers and schools.
The article looks at the intercultural exchange between A8 migrants and established community members. It highlights the evident lack of meaningful engagement between established communities and A8 migrants, which generally failed to produce constructive or generative interactions between the two groups.
The study found that the common spaces of neighbourhood and work shared by many A8 migrants and established community members facilitated everyday encounters that ranged from negative experiences and absences of interaction through to more active spatial strategies of withdrawal from mixing with members of ‘other’ communities. The research showed that the everyday encounters between the established communities and A8 migrants did not open up spaces for meaningful engagement that were capable of breaking down stereotypes and barriers to integration.
Population Space and Place
The study looks at motivations and experiences of Accession 8 [
A8] migrants. This paper questions the usefulness of the homogenising category ‘A8 migrant worker’ as a tool for understanding the diverse experiences of migrants from Central and Eastern Europe who have recently come to live and work in the United Kingdom.
This qualitative study was carried out in March 2008 in Leeds. In total, 89 people took part in the research. The fieldwork consisted of:
The study highlights a number of commonalities among A8 migrants, however it also implies heterogeneity within the group often categorised simply as new A8 migrant workers. Diversity within this group is apparent in respect of 3 particular aspects: the motivations and forms of movement undertaken by A8 migrants; their experiences of work within the UK paid labour market; and the extent to which the experience of migration offers new individual and collective opportunities and potentially enables people to reconfigure aspects of their identity.
The report points out that temporary, circular and/or transitory labour migrants remain an important element of the latest phase of new European migration; however it is increasingly problematic to discuss A8 migration in such a stereotypical manner. The report includes some positive and negative consequences of migration from the migrants’ point of view.
The Department for Communities and Local Government [DCLG] commissioned Experian to identify those rural areas recording a high number of migrant workers, their characteristics, and estimate their economic contribution to the rural economy. This report was commissioned by the previous government and is not necessarily a reflection of the current United Kingdom government’s policies and priorities.
The report consisted of 2 stage methodology that combines literature review, quantitative analysis, modelling techniques and qualitative research.
Stage 1 of the research focused on identifying vulnerable areas using quantitative analysis of the Annual Population Survey and other key sources of data on migration, such as the Workers Registration Scheme [WRS] and National Insurance Number Allocations [NINo] datasets.
Stage 2 of the research consisted of consultations with employers to assess their needs and how potential labour shortages could be tackled. Twenty consultations with employers in sectors that employ the highest numbers of migrants: agriculture, hospitality and manufacturing, particularly food-processing were undertaken. Additionally, five consultations with recruitment agencies in rural areas were carried out.
The report recognises the importance of the link between international migration and rural economies in the UK. The report consists of 5 sections and looks at:
The study highlights the value of migrants’ labour to rural areas and more generally the agriculture sector. The study evaluates the impact of the economic downturn on the UK's rural economy and its impact on the number of migrants resident in the UK. It reviews the effects of migration on rural areas in terms of labour markets, competitiveness and public service provision. It aims to identify those areas most at risk to the adverse effect of the downturn and those rural areas in which labour market shortages could potentially develop.
To analyse the impact of mainstream UK education on Roma students who were previously placed in special or segregated schools/classes in Czech Republic and Slovakia.
Desk based research was carried out on special education systems in Czech Republic and Slovakia and the situation of Roma within them. Data was collected between June and August 2011 and consisted of separate focus groups with Roma pupils and parents and semi-structured interviews with education staff across 8 locations in England, including Rotherham. 114 interviews were conducted:
85% of the pupils interviewed had been placed in segregated schools in their country of origin but only a tiny minority had special educational needs [SEN] and there was very little difference in attainment in the UK system between Roma pupils who had attended these schools and those who had not. Furthermore Roma pupils were achieving successfully in the UK system at just below the national average. There was evidence that once Roma pupils had integrated into the classroom in the UK there were fewer problems regarding community cohesion in and out of school. Both Roma parents and pupils reported feeling welcomed at UK schools, that there was an absence of discrimination and that teachers were helpful and supportive. UK schools and colleges have developed significant experience in working with Roma over the past two decades such that they represent some of the best practice in Europe.
Funded by the Migration Impact Fund, the report examines the employment and skills background of the local migrant community and the potential opportunities for future economic development within North Lincolnshire, United Kingdom.
Interviews were undertaken with 50 migrants [30 male and 20 female] living or working in North Lincolnshire, including Latvians  Polish , Portuguese  and smaller numbers from Bangladesh, Somalia, Zimbabwe, Ukraine and Latvia. The respondents were recruited via English for Speakers of Other Languages [ESOL] classes, an Employment Bureau Job Club, Citizens Advice Bureau and Local Links.
The report notes that the vast majority of workers from the migrant worker community in North Lincolnshire are in the secondary labour market and in 3 specific industry sectors: agriculture; food, fish and meat processing; and hospitality and catering. A number of barriers are identified which restrict the employment opportunities of migrant workers, such as non-UK work experience, lack of recognition of academic or vocational qualifications; and poor English language skills. The interviewees lack an appreciation of how to transfer their qualifications from abroad to be recognised in the UK and a lack of awareness of the availability of ESOL provision. The report notes the potential contribution of the migrant worker community to the future economic development in North Lincolnshire.
The report recommends that:
To argue that clothing, music, and dancing embody experiences both of migration, exile and separation and of familiarity, homeliness and unity. Doctoral research.
Fourteen months of ethnographic fieldwork between August 2003 and September 2004 with people from 11 different countries who were, or had been, accommodated in Leeds. The research employed participant observation. Relationships with individuals were built-up in visits to their homes, and subsequently with their associates and through engaging with the activities of refugee community organisations [RCOs] and other refugee supporting agencies. Access was facilitated by 2 volunteer roles that led to extended relationships with participants following discussion of informed consent. Fourteen men and women [7 refugees and 7 refused asylum seekers] were key participants and further contacts led to a larger group of 40 participants, including RCO representatives and practitioners. Key participants ranged from 17 years old to mid to late 30s and their children ranged from babies to teenagers.
Leisure practices of refugee and asylum seeking communities.
Music, clothing and dancing can be important to processes of settlement and negotiation of belonging. They signal a space that announces the creation of a moment, that is, ‘a community moment’, when people who consider themselves within the boundary can be ‘insiders’ in contrast to daily experiences of being an outsider. Dancing may provide a way of embodying home, and of gaining freedom that is particularly important for refugees who are likely to come without material goods but do travel with their bodily praxis.
This study investigates local experiences of, and responses to, globalisation. The report examines the different forms and modes of connection that globalisation produces. Through interviews and focus groups with people in three UK communities [north-east Lincolnshire, Greater Glasgow and west London/'Heathrow Village'], this study examines experiences of, and responses to, globalisation in the aftermath of the recession. The report is part of the Joseph Rowntree Foundation publications.
The research employed a qualitative methodology, based upon interviews and focus groups with workers, young people, representatives of community groups, local authorities, trade unions and interest groups. The fieldwork was undertaken over a 3 month period between June and September 2010. The research consists of 3 case studies that were selected to represent 3 forms of connection: north-east Lincolnshire – a ‘defensively connected’ place, Greater Glasgow – ‘disconnected’ communities and west London around the so-called ‘Heathrow Village’ – an ‘outwardly connected’ place.
The study addresses 3 key themes: uneven impacts of globalisation, globalisation and local labour markets, and community cohesion. The research highlights that globalisation has an uneven impact on localities, not only between different areas, but also within them. The report explains: the concept of globalisation; the relationship between globalisation, the UK policy framework and inequality; the uneven impacts of globalisation, connection and empowerment in labour markets, and community negotiations of globalisation. It concludes with main findings from the research and some implications for policy and practice.
The report concludes that it is necessary to rethink the way in which global processes interact with, and are related to, local issues and experiences. Researchers and policy-makers need to focus more on understanding and addressing the positive and negative impacts that key global processes such as information and communication technologies [ICTs], subcontracting and labour migration have on UK communities. Conventional understandings of globalisation assume that increased connection to global processes creates opportunity and empowerment for individuals and communities. However, some forms of global connection, particularly where they increase competition and insecurity in local labour markets, are associated with disempowerment and marginalisation. There are also considerable discrepancies between different people’s understanding of the impact and experiences of globalisation. The study identifies a number of implications for policy and practice.
The report highlights increased numbers of
A8 migrants from the new Accession countries that joined the European Union in 2004 residing in North Lincolnshire. The report includes the specific needs and key issues in regard to the new migrant population. It also offers recommendations in regard to communication strategies, health, housing, integration and employment matters.
The report highlights some practical recommendations to improve and strengthen practice in the future, including suggestions around:
The report documents an evaluation of the Gateway Protection Programme [GPP] which explores how the programme has been delivered by different agencies and investigates the experiences of refugees and their process of resettlement within the first 18 months of arriving in the UK. The evaluation was commissioned by the Home Office.
146 adult refugees participated in the research: 105 from Iraq, 18 from Democratic of Republic of Congo and 23 from Burma of Rohingya ethnicity.
Data was collected across the UK [locations included Bradford, Hull and Sheffield] at 6, 12 and 18 months after the refugees’ arrival in the UK and took place between October 2009 and November 2010.
The report focuses on:
The report highlights that while GPP caseworkers tried to promote greater independence amongst clients after 12 months, client satisfaction was related to how often they had contact with their caseworker. Client satisfaction therefore lessened over time. ESOL provision was not sufficient in meeting demand. There was evidence of social networks and support amongst all three nationality groups. A significant minority faced barriers in accessing health care and a large minority experienced race hate crime. Experiences of integration were shaped by gender, nationality and the area they lived in.
This briefing paper [Number 14] forms part of a series produced by Positive Action for Refugees and Asylum Seekers [PAFRAS]. This paper provides an overview of the access to legal aid for
refused asylum seekers.
The content of the paper is derived from interviews or conversations with people who use the PAFRAS drop-in centre based in Leeds, United Kingdom, as well as case law and published literature in this field.
Since their implementation Legal Aid reforms have placed pressure on providers to reduce their costs at the expense of the quality of work they do. The setting of a fixed fee at a low level and concentrating the available work in fewer organisations, resulting in the reduction of the number of law firms offering this service, particularly in Leeds, will have implications for asylum seekers’ access to justice.
The paper suggests that the recent reforms of the provision of Legal Aid have resulted in some firms with a great deal of experience of this work no longer providing this service, while new untested firms entering the market is a cause for concern. This suggests that the quality of the advice provided is now less important. The paper concludes that the recent reforms in this area and potential challenges in the future only serve to add further disruption and confusion for asylum seekers.
Interviews took place in the Yorkshire and Humber region of the United Kindgom during 2008-2009. Participants in the study were from 4 African communities; Sudanese, Somali, Kenyan and Zimbabwean. The project carried out 40 biographical interviews within 20 families [one parent and one child generation interview in each family]. Seven focus groups were also conducted within the 4 communities, organised by gender and age. All of the participants in this study have lived in Britain for between 5 and 40 years. The parental generation ranges from ages 40 to 60s, with the child generation ranging from late teens to 30s.The families in this study span a range of migration paths [migrant workers, students, family joiners, refugees, EU citizens].
The practices and expressions of belonging in, and to, places of current residence are arguably of critical importance to the challenge of ‘living together’ in ethno-culturally diverse contexts. Members of diasporic communities often have complex relationships to their host societies and their feelings of belonging may be stretched and simultaneously ‘here and there’. Scholars often assume that a transnational optic is appropriate for the study of first generation migrants who frequently retain multifarious socio-cultural, economic and political links to their countries of origin, but less suitable for second generation individuals who are assumed to experience stronger emotional attachments to local place-based contexts. This paper troubles such an assumption. Through exploring the emotional attachments to place[s] of first and second generation Zimbabwean, Somali, Sudanese and Kenyan migrants, the paper interprets the emotions associated with senses of belonging through ideas of plurilocal homes and simultaneity of attachments to different places.
The aims of the research were to investigate the educational and social contributions that mentors and befrienders make to refugee and asylum seeking children as well as the impact of awareness raising activities in schools. This is the final report of the Supporting and Mentoring in Learning and Education [SMILE] project, a 3 year project set up by the Refugee Council in 2008 and funded by the Department for Education.
The project operated in 3 regions: Greater London, the West Midlands and Yorkshire and the Humber. Data was collected from the start of the project in 2008 until the end of October 2010.
Data was obtained from a number of sources:
The project found that volunteers had a significant positive impact on young people, both in terms of assisting them to access an educational placement, and also in relation to improving their social skills. However, it also found that there were still considerable barriers to accessing education in the UK, and that negative perceptions of asylum seekers were common amongst school children in the UK.
The issue of age dispute arose spontaneously during the interviews and the report highlights the significant impact this can have on the young persons life and, in particular, how this can impact on education.
The report sets out a number of recommendations for the Department for Education, Local Authorities, schools, the UK Border Agency and the Refugee Council. Practical examples include:
The study looks at the extent to which government policy and practice meet the needs of women with insecure immigration status [known as
no recourse to public funds – NRPF] who are experiencing domestic violence. The study was commissioned by Saheli – a specialist domestic violence service based in Manchester, United Kingdom, and funded by Oxfam.
The study was conducted between January and June 2007. A total of 30 people took part in the study alongside 8 women’s refuges. The data was gathered by community interviewers [action research] who conducted qualitative interviews with 30 South Asian [Indian, Pakistani and Bangladeshi] women who are survivors of domestic violence and who had NRPF and were living in the North West and Yorkshire regions of England. Most of the research participants were recruited through domestic violence services but snowballing technique was also employed.
The paper argues that the NRPF represents a serious obstacle to accessing services, particularly for a very vulnerable group of women; it undermines women’s ability to end abusive relationships, recover from them and rebuild their lives.
The paper highlights a number of recommendations including making public funds accessible to survivors of domestic violence and reimbursing housing and living costs to
indefinite leave to remain [ILR] receivers under the Domestic Violence Rule. The author indicates an urgent need to strengthen specialist provision that is facing funding costs and as a long-term solution a change in law.
British Journal of Social Work
The paper contends that the expected impact of this demographic change upon the population profiles of the regions of the North of England has wide ranging implications for future economic and social policy. In the UK, a framework for policy development has identified the need for cultural change in the status of the expanding elderly section of society, with an emphasis upon increasing the employment rates overall but with greater flexibility for those aged 50 or older to continue careers. The need for stakeholders [for example individuals, Government, businesses] to assume responsibility for tackling the ageing issue is outlined in the theme ‘Society for all ages’ and backed up by a new Equalities Bill.
The study explores older migrant women’s experiences of accessing welfare citizenship and the barriers they encounter in accessing mainstream services. This article examines the impact that migration in later life has on the welfare citizenship of older women. The findings within the paper were obtained from the Older Women's Lives and Voices Study, which was funded by the UK Economic and Social Research Council's 'Growing Older' Programme.
The study was conducted with black Caribbean, Irish, Chinese and Somali older women migrants in Sheffield, Yorkshire, United Kingdom. The study took place between 2000 and 2002. It used interviews and focus groups with women aged 50+ from 5 ethnic communities living in Sheffield, Yorkshire, UK: black Caribbean, white British, Chinese, Irish and Somali. In total, 96 women participated in the study and just over half were from minority ethnic groups. Their migrations occurred at different stages of the life course. The participants were recruited through established community groups. An action research approach was adopted.
The article looks at how the migration experience, and the age at which a person moves, shape the welfare preferences, needs and access to welfare services of older migrant women. The study looks at 3 specific areas in relation to older migrant women:
The study points that the perceptions and expectations of citizenship are culturally differentiated. The research highlights the important bridging and enabling roles played by cultural and community organisations in informal welfare support. It emphasises the need for more resources for language services, more support workers from minority communities and training of frontline staff in their patients’ and clients’ migration backgrounds. Language and communication were found to be the biggest issue for the majority of the older women in the study. The article highlights the need for more recognition of the important enabling role that informal systems of support provided by participation in community or cultural organisations play in the welfare citizenship and agency of minority ethnic older women.
Ageing and Society
The project was commissioned by the Joseph Rowntree Foundation’s York Grants Committee to provide a more up to date picture of the city’s population in terms of size and diversity than was available solely via official statistics.
The research commenced with a review of the official data available on the ethnic composition of York [United Kingdom], such as the 2001 Census and the Workers Registration Scheme [WRS] and National Insurance Numbers Allocation [NINo]. In addition, a range of complementary research techniques were used, such as mapping and qualitative interviews which were supplemented by a range of less formal techniques, such as the collection of administrative employment data from local organisations, observation and networking.
Contrary to the popular perception of York as a largely ‘white’ city, with less than 7 minority groups present, the study identified 92 different ethnic/national origins present in the city and 78 different first languages. Based on the research, it is estimated that the minority ethnic population [all groups other than White British] in 2009 was approximately 11% of York’s total estimated population: an estimate substantially higher than the figure generally used by policy and service agencies within the city and twice the size of the Black and Minority Ethnic population recorded in the 2001 census.
The study makes the following recommendations for agencies working in York:
The report notes that the key to understanding the growth of the minority population is an understanding of the changing nature of the local labour market.
The report forms part of a police study aimed at improving understanding of the nature and scale of the trafficking of migrant women for sexual exploitation [Project Acumen] so it can be tackled more effectively. It seeks to measure the extent of trafficking in England and Wales, and highlight the circumstances of trafficked women and the varied techniques used by traffickers to exploit them.
A structured research programme was undertaken in 2 distinct stages, over a 12 month period in 7 Government Office regions [including Yorkshire and Humber]:
The results were analysed to identify evidence of trafficking, exploitation and coercion and the prevalence of each. This was then combined with the previous information on the size of the sector in particular areas to estimate the likely number of individuals that exist within each category. Results were checked with local experts and other sources.
The report does warn that, due to the covert nature of human trafficking, the report can only represent a ‘best estimate’ rather than a definitive picture of the extent of human trafficking in the off-street prostitution sector in England and Wales.
The report provides statistical information on the off-street prostitution sector in England and Wales and provides a breakdown of the number of women involved by region, area of origin and exploitation category.
The report found that over half of the 30000 women involved in off-street prostitution in England and Wales, 17000 are migrant women. Of these 17000, 2600 are trafficked and 9200 are considered to be vulnerable to trafficking [5500 do not meet the ‘trafficked’ or ‘vulnerable’ thresholds].
The report also identifies significant regional differences. For example, less than a third of women in Yorkshire and Humber are migrants, while in London this figure rises to 96%. Of the migrant women working in this sector in Yorkshire and Humber, the majority are from Eastern Europe and Asia. Yorkshire and Humber has the second highest number of businesses involved in the off-street prostitution sector [after London].
In addition to statistics, the report also looks at the circumstances which lead migrants to become involved in prostitution and breaks down the sector into quantifiable segments – with a different combination of coercive, cultural and financial factors seen within each sector.
The report does not make any recommendations of how to tackle trafficking in the off-street prostitution sector, it merely aims to give greater understanding of the problem through which the UK can develop more effective approaches for combating trafficking for sexual exploitation.
To identify and explore key issues relating to the health and health care of Slovak Roma people in Tinsley, Sheffield.
Eight semi-structured interviews with 4 individuals and 4 couples were conducted. Participants were accessed via a health visitor who had existing contact with them. Participants varied in relation to time spent in the UK, age, sex, social position and level of health needs. Nine professionals working for healthcare providers were also interviewed. The size and scope of the study was limited by resource constraints. There is also potential bias acknowledged by the research relating to difficulties in accessing Roma people independent of the health visitor, and being unable to interview some individuals without family intervention. Subsequently the most vulnerable and isolated may have been excluded from the research.
The report focuses on the scope and nature of healthcare provision and its ability to meet the needs of Slovak Roma in Tinsley, Sheffield, as well as the low health status of Roma, barriers to health education, primary care and health promotion.
The report concludes that health services are largely unable to meet the complex health, language and cultural needs specific to this particular community. As a result, Roma remain isolated from appropriate and effective services, despite their determination to improve their lives. This has reinforced a sense of powerlessness within the community.
The report states there is a need to ensure that health information and advice is more readily accessible to the community. This is particularly important because lack of health education limits the capacity to prevent illness and to benefit from medical interventions. Widespread health education could be achieved through the provision of more translated materials, culturally specific support in the form of a dedicated Roma health worker, and greater access to interpreters and English classes. In addition there needs to be opportunities for the Roma community to influence service planning and delivery through sustained consultation and collaboration in health provision.
The report, commissioned by the Joseph Rowntree Foundation, evaluates the use of community based forums to engage new and settled populations in discussions around local housing, community and neighbourhood issues in 3 areas of Bradford to build shared understanding between groups with different backgrounds.
Firstly, the study used 14 poster forums [including posters that posed questions on attitudes to housing and neighbourhoods in the context of ‘changing communities’] to engage with a wide range of residents to identify local concerns, commonalities and tensions – 171 residents in total.
Then 4 interactive discussion forums took place to bring together new and settled groups in 3 localities: 2 diverse, mixed tenure inner city areas where established white, Afro/Caribbean and Asian residents were brought together with new Slovak and Czech migrants; and one new zone of ethnic diversity where established white social tenants participated in a forum with new Filipino migrants.
The attendance at each forum event varied between 14 and 23 people. Two of the events were women only and one focussed on 18-25 year old Asian and Eastern European men – a traditionally hard to reach group.
The forums were evaluated though entry and exit questionnaires, observations during the forums and follow up, in depth interviews with a sample of 19 of the 63 participants.
The project found that participants valued the opportunity to discuss issues, challenge misconceptions and identify areas of commonality. Participants felt that the forums were a worthwhile experience – with women, in particular wanting to engage more with other groups. Asian participants felt the forums helped them learn more about their new Eastern European neighbours.
Despite the positive outcomes, the report acknowledges that there are limits to what can be achieved and that is may be unrealistic to expect such diverse groups to agree and collaborate fully on local issues.
The forums provided an insight into how local engagement might be approached to develop shared understanding and visions for the future, and opened up potential for community building and neighbourliness.
However, they also highlighted to risks of leaving local communities to manage the challenges posed by new immigration alone – particularly due to the racial prejudices that exist between these groups.
The report offers a number of recommendations around the need for additional support for communities, frontline workers and vulnerable groups.
The research was a short project commissioned by the Northern Refugee Centre [NRC], on behalf of Parity Associates as part of their regeneration work for disadvantaged communities, as an introduction to the mapping of new migrants in the cultural industries in Bradford since 2005.
Data was obtained through interviews and focus group discussions during winter 2009-10 with a small number of new migrants from
A8 and African countries that had arrived in Bradford since 2005 and who were trained and/or experienced in a cultural industry. Information was sought from key personnel who work with new migrants on their knowledge of new migrant experiences in these industries.
The report looks at the experiences of a small number of new migrants, and presents two polish case studies, to identify the barriers and aids to seeking and gaining work in Bradford’s cultural industries [for example music/film/TV production, publishing, architecture, crafts and design, visual and performing arts, sport, advertising, cultural tourism and so on]. The main concern for the new migrants interviewed was being able to financially support themselves and their families, which has meant that they have had to put their creative ambitions on hold. Those that are in a position to pursue their creative ambitions feel that there is very little information and support available to them.
The research found that there are very few known new migrants from A8 or African countries working in the cultural industries, but those that are working in these industries feel that command of the English language, length of residence and knowledge of how to access information and services are key to opening up possibilities.
The study looks at the experiences of communication between refugee and asylum seeking parents and high school staff in Leeds to highlight areas of good practice and also identify learning points to inform and strengthen future practices.
The study was carried out over a three month period and formed part of the Children’s Society Leading Edge Initiative at the LEAP Programme, Leeds. A total of 16 parents/carers and 20 school staff, linked to 14 schools in Leeds, took part in the study. The parents/carers involved in the study had all arrived in the UK between 2006 and 2009 and were from a range of nationalities. The data was gathered using qualitative face to face interviews with parents [using professionally trained face to face interpreters where appropriate], and semi structured questionnaires to school staff.
The report looks at five key areas:
The report includes testimonies from parents and school staff, examples of good practice. It also identifies learning points for each of the five areas.
The report highlights ten practical recommendations to improve and strengthen practice in the future, including suggestions around information provision for parents, support, the induction process, inclusion, engagement and training for school staff.
This briefing paper [Number 13] forms part of a series produced by Positive Action for Refugees and Asylum Seekers [PAFRAS]. This paper provides an update of the briefing paper number 11 [Beyond the edges of healthcare provision: refused asylum seekers and access to healthcare].
The content of the paper is derived from interviews or conversations with people who use the PAFRAS drop-in centre based in Leeds, United Kingdom, and includes a survey of 63 service users.
Since 2004 irregular migrant and
refused asylum seekers can be charged for secondary treatment unless the care required was deemed ‘urgent’ and ‘immediately necessary’ by a clinician. The charging regime resulted in many cases of people being refused treatment with long term implications for their health. In 2008 a High Court ruling effectively allowed free secondary care to all refused asylum seekers who had been resident in the UK for at least 12 months, although this was later overturned by a Court of Appeal ruling in 2009. In 2010 the Department of Health launched a consultation on new charging regulations and guidance. However, lack of clarity is still seen as a significant problem but responsibility for its implementation lies with all NHS staff. Many refused asylum seekers put off seeking medical attention until they are much more seriously ill.
The paper suggests that the proposal for making all NHS staff responsible for ensuring that the charging regime works places greater pressure on clinicians to conform to the policy which could lead to a worsening situation for refused asylum seekers in coming years.
This working paper [10/4] is part of the Demographic and Migratory Flows Affecting European Regions and Cities [DEMIFER] project which aims to examine the historical and future impact of demographic change upon the 27 members of the European Union and this paper reports on the West Yorkshire Case study.
Secondary analysis of official data bases relating to trends, fertility, mortality, internal migration and international migration.
The paper summarises the historical picture of population change in West Yorkshire [United Kingdom] and its key components and the importance of migration in this process. It considers how demographic change is likely to impact on the profile of the population in terms of age structure, labour force, elderly population and ethnic composition. It considers different population projection scenarios and how they would impact on West Yorkshire.
The paper highlights the contrasting sub-areas of Leeds and Bradford, suggesting that as regards Leeds, the diversity in its service sector and less reliance on public sector employment will assist its economic recovery. In contrast, Bradford has suffered from a lack of investment and is experiencing out-migration through internal migration to adjacent areas, balanced by a net inflow due to international migration from the Asian community. Hence, in a competitive market economy West Yorkshire is likely to experience mixed benefits.
The research took place in 2 wards within Bradford, chosen due to a range of criteria including: ethnic and religious diversity; migration history; socio-economic deprivation indicators; the structure of the Muslim communities; and local media coverage of Muslim issues within Bradford. A combination of a purposive, quota-based sampling strategy together with snowball sampling was used to identify a sample of 117 participants consisting of: 52 recently arrived [less than 5 years residence] Muslims; 15 recently arrived non-Muslims; 35 established [10 years of residence] Muslim residents; and 15 UK-born non-Muslim residents. Half the respondents were male: 49% were in the age range 25-44; 68% were Pakistani; and 74% were foreign born. A panel of locally-based trained interviewers with the appropriate gender and ethnic mix conducted the interviews. In addition, semi-structured interviews were undertaken with the participants. Interviews were also conducted with 10 local policy makers and service providers.
In terms of spaces and interactions the research found that the established Muslim community [more so than recent arrivals] have greater interactions and live in neighbourhoods with different ethnic and religious backgrounds. Established Muslims were also more likely to use friendship networks than recent Muslim arrivals who tended to use kinship networks. The former also tended to have the highest rate of participation of any sample group in national and local elections. Transnational contact for all participants was weak, limited to sending small sums of money, reading newspapers or use of the telephone. Visits to their country of origin were infrequent. Among the policy makers and service providers interviewed there was little consensus on the meaning of cohesion with deprivation and marginalisation seen to be the main issues. Concerns often focused around housing and education and how to overcome the resistance of the white working class to mixing with the dominant Black and Minority Ethnic [BME] group, Pakistanis.
Established communities were found to be more integrated than recent arrivals and while deprivation, marginalisation, especially unemployment and low skills, over-crowding and lack of financial well-being affected all the groups, this was more acute for recent arrivals. Established as opposed to recent arrivals share a deep sense of attachment and belonging to their locality, have a high turnout in electoral politics and are more informed of issues. The research identified the need for policy makers and community organisations to engage with the white working class and make them more receptive to notions of diversity and harmony. It also noted that media representation and presentation is important: Bradford is often the focus of anti-Muslim media reporting. Other issues identified which need attention include: managing community representation more effectively; bringing the white working class into the remit of community cohesion policy; and ensuring that housing and education are more ethnically mixed.
This academic article looks at the experiences of young female asylum seekers and refugees aged between 16 and 25 years who, in legal, policy and migration research terms, are placed along the borders of the adult/child category divide. It focuses on how these women recreate a sense of home in West Yorkshire.
The study on which the article is based took place between September 2007 and October 2008. Data was obtained through a photography task [where the participants were asked to take photos illustrating what did and did not make them feel at home] and semi structured interviews with 23 young refugee and asylum seeking women who were living in West Yorkshire at the time of the study. A theoretical sampling method was used to select the participants and focused on variables such as age, nationality, immigration status, length of time in the UK and household type.
The article examines the young women’s perceptions of ‘home’ and how they prioritise particular elements [for example safety, family, acceptance, normality/routine and so on], in terms of their importance and achievability, with reference to their life experiences so far. It also highlights some of the challenges the young women faced when trying to achieve the elements of ‘home’. The article itself focuses on just six of the young women’s accounts to enable a more detailed analysis of each young woman’s experience.
The article states that ‘home’ for the young women involved in the study is a fluid and evolving concept and the experiences of ‘home’ for these young women varied depending on their particular circumstances – although safety and normality/planning for the future were the elements most commonly identified.
Childhood – A journal of global child research
The report profiles the Eastern European [both
A8] population living in Doncaster in 2010.
Data was obtained through a survey of 200 Eastern European migrants and then by in depth, semi structured interviews with 20 of the respondents [who were selected to ensure a cross section of the Eastern European migrant community in terms of nationality, age, gender, experiences and so on]. Other data, including Worker Registration Scheme data and National Insurance Numbers data, was also analysed - as well as more unusual sources such as primary school language support data.
The report looks at how East European migration has changed the profile of the population of Doncaster since 2004. It uses tables, graphs and case studies to illustrate how this change has impacted on services, including education, housing and health, as well as the impact on community cohesion. The report also provides detailed information on employment of East European migrants including employment rates, occupations, pay and conditions and the role of recruitment agencies.
Particularly noteworthy conclusions include:
The report offers a number of recommendations for local authorities and others aimed at improving the integration of East European migrants into the host communities.
This book chapter outlines the barriers refugees have faced in attempting to integrate into a United Kingdom university and suggests practical approaches that should be adopted to meet their needs.
The report looks at the role child care can play in helping asylum seeking and refugee families adjust to their new lives and integrate into their new communities. It also looks at the barriers these families have to overcome to enable them to take up available child care provision. The report was commissioned by the Northern Refugee Centre with funding from the Tudor Trust.
Data was obtained from asylum seeker/refugee parents and service providers through questionnaires, interviews and focus groups between June and September 2009. From the 200 [approximate number] individuals, from a wide range of organisations, who were contacted, 35 responses were received – 13 from organisations and 22 from asylums seeking/refugee parents. Data gathered in 2008 and used to inform the Yorkshire and Humber Regional Refugee Integration Strategy, was also used.
The report identifies the most vulnerable parents who will require the most support and emphasises that support needs to be targeted to meet specific needs such as giving those parents time to:
The report also identifies a number of barriers that would prevent parents from accessing child care provision such as: the lack of information and availability of suitable child care; a lack of funding; and the parents' lack of trust in others.
The report details a number of recommendations for frontline organisations, policy makers, the UK Border Agency, Early Years Partnerships and funders.
The project looked at the antenatal, birth and post natal experiences of asylum seeking and refugee women in Leeds to identify gaps in current service provision and examine how immigration status affected their access to services to help shape future policy. The project was commissioned by Womens Health Matters, and funded by NHS Leeds Children’s and Maternity Services and Leeds Special Grants Programme, in response to issues raised by the Leeds Maternity Health Needs Assessment 07/08 – 08/09 and a report for the Maternity Services Liaison Committee. It is aimed at both service providers and policy makers.
In depth, semi structured interviews were carried out in 2009 with 20 women aged between 16 and 43 who lived in Leeds. In total, 24 births were discussed. The majority of women originated from African countries with the remainder coming from China, Iraq, Syria and Palestine.
The women were contacted through a number of different organisations and individuals to ensure as wide a range of experiences as possible. However, it is noted that, as the majority of the women were contacted through support organisations, this may have skewed the findings resulting in the number of women who received additional support during their pregnancies being disproportionately high.
The appendices to the full report give examples of the information given to the women ahead of the interviews and details of the interview questions.
The report looks at the impact of the current asylum system on pregnant women seeking refuge in this country. It also examines what happens when these women become part of the maternity system, in particular ante natal care, experiences during labour, post natal care and interpreting and communication issues throughout.
Key issues highlighted include:
In addition, some women were moved to different accommodation several times during their pregnancy [due to change in asylum status etc] and this had a detrimental effect on healthcare provision and support networks which increases the risk to mother and baby.
There are some areas of positive practice highlighted in the report, in particular midwives working out of SureStart Children’s Centres and doulas/befrienders arranged through the voluntary/community sector.
The report offers a number of recommendations for individuals and agencies in contact with pregnant asylum seeking and refugee women. These include recommendations relating to the provision of specialist care for asylum seekers and refugees, training for health professionals, community and hospital practice and interpreting services.
Full report and summary available in pdf format.
The research was commissioned by Oxfam and conducted by the Contemporary Slavery Research Centre, Hull University, to evaluate the Gangmasters Licensing Authority [GLA] and the Gangmasters [Licensing] Act. It examines the extent to which they have succeeded in protecting the rights of vulnerable and migrant workers.
A literature review was conducted to examine the legislation, including legislation in other European countries. Fieldwork took place between August 2008 and January 2009 and consisted of 30 interviews with key stakeholders such as the Gangmaster Licensing Authority [GLA], trade unions and retailers. In addition, 10 semi-structured interviews were conducted with vulnerable and migrant workers in Lincolnshire and Hull. Access to these individuals was facilitated by workers at Oxfam and other agencies who had existing relationships and contact with them.
The report focuses on the nature and extent of worker exploitation in employment sectors such as food and agriculture; the strengths and success of the GLA in bringing greater regulation to these sectors; weaknesses in the GLA, and proposals and recommendations for change.
The report concludes that the UK Employment Enforcement Network is not effectively protecting the rights of temporary workers, in particular migrant workers. The GLA has made some progress and has been proactive in its investigations but ultimately is under resourced and too limited in its scope and remit. Exploited workers do not receive sufficient support to seek redress and face significant barriers in doing so. Undocumented migrant workers often remain entirely unprotected.
The report recommends that there should be greater government commitment to tackling exploitation and abuse, and that this should include providing more resources to the GLA so that it can extend its scope and remit into labour sectors such as hospitality. It highlights the need for greater cooperation and better links between agencies, awareness raising amongst migrant communities and support for workers who wish to seek redress.
This paper looks at how asylum support workers make sense of their roles and how ‘asylum support’ is delivered within the confines of national policy.
A total of 32 people, working in asylum support teams within the Yorkshire and Humber region, took part in the study. The participants were mostly white British, although there were two people from Asian communities and a further two from Eastern Europe. The data was gathered using semi structured interviews and focus groups which focussed on three key areas: the type, nature and delivery of asylum support services; the role support teams and individuals take in this support; and future development of support services.
The report looks at the differences between the ‘official’ role of the asylum support teams and what is actually delivered. It highlights the unique and hybrid nature of asylum support work, with many respondents reporting that they provide a much wider support role [sometimes taking on a ‘social care’ or ‘housing officer’ role – and there are also examples of respondents taking on the role of birthing partner and marriage guidance counsellor]. Those that did not provide wider support wanted to, but were unable due to time and resource pressures. The report also found that many respondents felt that asylum support was like a ‘quest’, but once that quest was completed, the sense of satisfaction and achievement was great.
The report concludes that asylum support workers attempt to provide ‘added value’ to asylum support requirements to combat exclusion and help asylum seekers to integrate into their communities and their new lives – and that they gain some personal fulfilment in return for their efforts.
International Journal of Migration, Health and Social Care
This briefing paper [Number 12] forms part of a series produced by Positive Action for Refugees and Asylum Seekers [PAFRAS]. This paper focuses on the ‘deskilling’ of
refused asylum seekers.
The content of the paper is derived from interviews or conversations with people who use the PAFRAS drop-in centre based in Leeds, United Kingdom, as well as a questionnaire given to 32 refused asylum seekers asking about their skills and qualifications.
The paper reports that the ability of refused asylum seekers to engage in wider society is prevented: work remains unavailable and education opportunities are generally denied.
Section 4 support is conditional on participating in community activities, however, involvement in volunteering could result in them being issued with removal directions. Periods of lack of employment can lead to deskilling which in turn can have implications for the mental health and well-being and hinders their longer term prospects when, and if, they are later given leave to remain and enabled to work.
The paper suggests that the range of barriers in place to deny failed asylum seekers to employment, education or volunteering denies this group access to any form of social engagement which is seen as a part of a wider government framework which ultimately forces people to leave the country.
This briefing on returns is part of a series that provides concise analyses of key policies and concerns relating to people made destitute through the asylum process.
Policy analysis and data from interviews with people who use the PAFRAS [Positive Action for Refugees and Asylum Seekers] drop-in.
The paper discusses the contradiction between the designation of countries as unsafe for return and the level of support for those who cannot therefore be returned with reference to the cases of Zimbabwe and the Democratic Republic of Congo. The emphasis on return to dangerous countries is critiqued in relation to foreign policy concerns and problems of the mechanisms of return outlined.
The human rights of people who have sought asylum seem low in a range of concerns that affect removal policies.
This briefing on access to legal aid is part of a series that provides concise analyses of key policies and concerns relating to people made destitute through the asylum process.
Policy analysis and data from interviews with people who use the PAFRAS [Positive Action for Refugees and Asylum Seekers] drop-in.
The paper discusses the implementation of destitution in the asylum system; the apparent escalation of destitution using statistics from the PAFRAS drop-in; institutionalised poverty; the features of destitution and the political framework of destitution.
This briefing paper [Number 11] forms part of a series produced by Positive Action for Refugees and Asylum Seekers [PAFRAS]. This paper focuses on the provision of medical assistance in the form of primary care access, available to
refused asylum seekers.
The paper reports that asylum seekers have particular health care needs associated with their experience and having to flee persecution. Refused asylum seekers, compared to those waiting for a decision on their asylum claim, in receipt of
Section 4 support or refugees, were the least likely to be registered with either a GP or a dentist. Those who have been refused asylum are often reluctant to approach health facilities for fear of deportation, they are unfamiliar with the British welfare system and the nuances of health care provision and often assume that all NHS care has been withdrawn from them. Evidence also shows that some experience racism from their GPs. Similar issues apply equally to access to a dentist.
The research was commissioned by NHS Hull to gather views of asylum seekers and refugees in Hull about their lives and health, to consult with agencies concerned with health and social care, to identify best practice and to propose a strategy for the health and social care of asylum seekers and refugees in Hull.
The enquiry combined semi-structured interviews with asylum seekers, refugees, service providers and policy makers, four focus groups, and a two week destitution survey at four agencies. Visits were made to projects in six other cities to learn about services and examples of best practice.
The report uncovers examples of good work and examines shortcomings in terms of access to primary care and poor housing affecting health. Professional interpreters are not used as much as they could be. Results of the survey, based on the Joseph Rowntree Charitable Trust destitution research, are compared with findings from Leeds, showing differences in ethnic mix. Services for asylum seekers in Hull are described. Examples of exemplary approaches to asylum seeker care in Sheffield, Bradford Leeds and Birmingham are outlined. The report also discusses the findings from Hull in relation to existing research and policy.
Strategic recommendations are aimed at health services and suggest strategic leadership and coordination through a Sanctuary Board, use of the term sanctuary, education for staff, and better communication between statutory and voluntary agencies. Operational recommendations relate to TB screening, clinical recording, treatment for post-traumatic stress disorder, a welcome programme for new arrivals, and the need for focus on the needs of those destitute, families, children, and trafficked people.
The report looks at how the migration and integration experiences of African migrants living in Yorkshire vary across family generations. The study was funded by the British Academy under its Research Development Scheme.
Data was obtained over an 18 month period during 2008-09 through 40 biographical interviews with 20 families of African origin [Sudanese, Somali, Kenyan and Zimbabwean] living in Yorkshire. Interviews were also conducted with other key individuals including community leaders, and local and national policy makers. Data was also gathered from focus group discussions conducted within the four African communities. All those involved in the study had lived in the UK for between five and 40 years and came to the UK by a range of migration paths [migrant workers, students, family joiners, refugees, EU citizens] – although many of the ‘child’ generation were British born.
The report focuses on the intergenerational aspects of migration and its consequences. It looks at how the different generations from each of the four African countries involved in the study feel that their migration to the UK has affected relationships within the family, their cultural identity and the development of social networks. It also examines their views on welfare provision, education and employment, and their experiences of discrimination and prejudice. The report includes numerous [anonymised] quotes from those involved in the study.
Noteworthy conclusions include:
The report states that integration policies should not mistake difficulties migrants have in being accepted in the UK for a lack of attachment to the country. It also offers a number of recommendations for policy makers around housing provision for, and the settlement and integration of, asylum seekers and emphasises the need for greater equality in education and employment for migrants.
The report summarises findings from eight research projects, two of which explored the experiences of recent migrants to Bradford. All the projects featured in the report form part of the Joseph Rowntree Foundation’s ten year programme to improve life in Bradford.
Two projects specifically focussed on the experiences of recent migrants to the city:
As the report is merely summarising the projects, there is very little information regarding the methodology used. However, the summary does include one case study detailing the experiences of a Polish entrepreneur in his early thirties.
The report summarises the key findings of each of the projects:
Further information on the two projects included within the report can be found on the JRF website.
The study aims to explore the human resource management [HRM] implications of employers’ use of migrants in low-skilled jobs. Notions of ‘hard’ and ‘soft’ HRM are considered. This case study is taken from a wider project examining the social and economic experiences of migrant workers, asylum seekers and refugees in Barnsley, United Kingdom, conducted between 2005 and 2006.
The paper employed a case study of a UK-based employer based in Barnsley, South Yorkshire who uses large numbers of migrant workers. Ninety per cent of the 225 strong workforce are migrant workers, mostly from the EU accession countries. The paper draws on data from a survey of migrant workers in the firm conducted in 2006, and from interviews with managers and migrant workers within this firm, conducted between 2005 and 2006. The research adopted a multi-method approach, combining qualitative and quantitative research data in the form of 10 semi-structured interviews with production workers who were migrants and the management of the company [the Managing Director, the General Manager and the training manager]; and a survey with 113 asylum seekers, migrant workers and refugees. Interviews were also conducted with representatives from key local support agencies and labour market actors, including trade unions.
The study highlights that the use of migrant workers is likely to be associated with a 'hard' rather than ‘soft’ approach to HRM, which emphasises the disposability and interchangeability of what is assumed to be homogenous units of labour. Other HRM implications that arise from the use of migrant workers in low-skilled jobs are:
The researched company’s ability to maintain a 'low wage long hours' strategy, using a hard HRM strategy has been facilitated by the expansion of the European Union and the increasing availability of migrant workers.
Given that low skilled employment constitutes the largest component of the total of jobs taken by migrant workers, there is a need for more attention towards the strategies of employers using migrants for low-skilled work. The research highlights that for many migrant workers, the type of work undertaken in the UK is of lower skill than their experience in their home country, suggesting that there is a considerable underutilisation of the resources of migrant workers in the UK. Migrants’ wages usually do not exceed the minimum wage whilst working hours are long and often unsociable. The article also points to the importance of informal recruitment strategies for attracting migrant workers.
International Journal of Manpower
The study looks at housing and health care service provision for asylum seeking women in Bradford, United Kingdom, and whether service delivery meets their needs and expectations. A key aim of this study was to empower asylum seeking women, give them a voice and enable their views to be heard.
The study was carried out in June 2009 in Bradford, West Yorkshire. A total of 10 asylum seeking women took part from Zimbabwe, Iran and Eritrea. The women were aged between 23 and 48 years old and were chosen from the Bradford Ecumenical Asylum Concern [BEACON] project. They respondents had been seeking asylum for between one and 3 years. The study adopted a qualitative approach, using semi-structured focus groups. Two focus groups were conducted with the same 10 women on 2 different occasions.
The study highlights that the healthcare services provided in Bradford to asylum seeking women are culturally inappropriate, the accommodation allocation system leads to social isolation and there is insufficient information on healthcare and housing services due to a lack of adequate English language skills.
The study concludes that although there is a variety of housing and healthcare services for asylum seeking women in Bradford, most services do not meet their specific needs or expectations, with little attention paid to issues of culture, gender and religion. There are a lack of female doctors and child care facilities. Language is one of the major barriers and there is confusion around interpreting services and access to them. Racism and discrimination were also perceived to be commonplace, as well as a lack of overall awareness in relation to asylum seekers. The study also indicates a lack of knowledge around the UK health care system among women asylum seekers.
The study looks at the differential labour market effects from Accession 8 [
A8] migration on two contrasting United Kingdom city economies – Bristol and Hull. The aim of the study is to fill the gap in understanding of the local labour market impacts by contrasting the impact from A8 migration on a [pre-recession] high performing city, Bristol, with the impact on a city where demand for labour is comparatively low, Hull.
The study was carried out between October 2008 and January 2009. The Universities of Bristol and Hull were commissioned to conduct a quantitative data analysis – drawing on the Labour Force Survey, National Insurance Number Registrations [NINo], Worker Registration Scheme [WRS], Annual Population Survey [APS], Jobcentre Plus [JCP] and Census data. This was complemented by conducting 60 qualitative interviews in Bristol and Hull – 20 interviews with public sector stakeholders, 20 interviews with migrant workers and associations, and 20 interviews with employers, trade unions, and employment and skills agencies.
The report outlines several key issues in relation to Bristol and Hull:
The report highlights a number of policy recommendations. Both cities – Bristol and Hull, need to do more to understand and integrate A8 workers into their local economy. Councils should use the new economic assessments to measure immigrants’ role in, and contribution to, city-regional/sub-regional labour markets. The report recommended that the findings should be used to inform training needs, particularly in relation to local young people and ‘soft’ skills.
This is a report of an event to gain a snapshot of the issues affecting women in Kirklees with a focus on financial support and accommodation.
17 women attended the informal event including women seeking asylum, those refused, those who had been granted refugee status and support workers.
Main issues that arose on the day were: shared accommodation for mother and babies; Section 4 vouchers causing embarrassment and restricting choice and financial creativity; access to education and lack of childcare, and women with no recourse to public funds and domestic violence.
The report identifies solutions aimed at central and local government and a range of agencies that relate to Section 4 vouchers, funding for college courses, crèche provision, separate accommodation for families, and location of Section 4 housing.
This is a report of findings from the 2009 destitution survey in Leeds which aims to underline the continuing needs of destitute asylum seekers and to provide data for those who seek to change government policy.
A four week survey of destitute clients approaching four agencies in Leeds and 13 interviews with representatives from refugee agencies and statutory providers and interviews with representatives of four refugee community organisations.
High levels of destitution continue to be a problem among asylum seekers in Leeds. The number of visits to four agencies increased. Destitution happens at all stages of the asylum process; most of those surveyed were refused asylum seekers. Administrative delays worsen destitution. The number of people destitute after being processed by the New Asylum Model increased. Entitlement to apply for support does not mean entitlement to receive support. Families and children are destitute, many for one or two years or more. Destitution is serious and prolonged: there was an increase in instances in rough sleeping and many individuals had been destitute for a year or more. Most came from just four countries [Zimbabwe, Iran, Eritrea and Iraq] were there is ongoing conflict and unrest. Voluntary, charity and faith resources are pushed to the limit - restricted resources forced two projects to temporarily close in 2009. Incidents of aggression and violence caused by increasing levels of desperation from prolonged and worsening destitution have become increasingly commonplace for frontline staff.
Destitution is linked to country of origin: people most likely to have difficulty in arranging return are most likely to be destitute for extended periods. Long-term destitution causes frustration and worsening health and mental health symptoms. Voluntary, charity and faith resources to support destitute people are at breaking point.
Recommendations are aimed at the government and statutory bodies working with asylum seekers. End the destitution of asylum seekers and refugees at all stages of the asylum process. Give asylum seekers the right to work. Overhaul the whole system: efforts to improve the existing system have not worked. Create an arms-length body to make asylum decisions. Grant temporary leave to remain to people who cannot return through no fault of their own. Abolish Section 4 support, make continuation of support automatic on refusal of an asylum claim. The local authority and refugee supporting agencies should share information and practice to safeguard families and children from destitution. Allow religious, social networks and family to be recognised as meaningful connections for refugees in need of housing.
To investigate the remittance strategies of Zimbabweans living in Northern England in 2008.
The research used 'ethnosurvey' research design that combined 307 community surveys with qualitative and ethnographic data from 35 community semi-structured interviews, expert interviews, field notes and community corroboration with Zimbabweans living in Leeds, Bradford, Sheffield and the Humber.
The paper addresses findings from the research relating to the scale, scope and implications of remitting, the characteristics of those remitting and not remitting, and implications for theory and policy. It is argued that the extent of remitting has been underestimated, both quantitatively and conceptually. The profile of remitters is that they are more likely to be married, in an older age group, making one or more visits to Zimbabwe, intending to return employed, possessing higher levels of education. The research found that remitting piles pressure on Zimbabwean families in the UK and in Zimbabwe, and can represent a form of dependency and deepening inequality with negative consequences for recovery in Zimbabwe.
Policy must remain equally attentive to social and economic processes. The remittance debate must consider the transnational context of remitting.
Adopting a qualitative approach, the initial stage of the research involved identifying participants with children between 3-8 years of age from two locations [Sheffield and East London] who were from four religio-ethnic groups: Bangladeshi Muslims; Pakistani Muslims; Gujarati Hindus; and Punjabi Hindus. A total of 80 individuals were identified and engaged through a series of data generation methods including key informant interviews, focus groups discussions [mothers and fathers], open-ended interviews with fathers and informal observation. The second phase involved 59 in-depth interviews with fathers and 33 with mothers. The lack of inclusion of white fathers was seen as a potential shortcoming of the research.
Fathers contribute to their children’s upbringing both directly and indirectly with the majority contributing materially and a large number regularly contributing to feeding, bathing and personal childcare tasks. While the ability to earn an income was seen as an important aspect of being a father, it practically constrained some fathers from contributing in other ways. Gendered norms and attitudes in their religio-ethnic community restricted some fathers’ involvement in some childcare tasks, such as personal hygiene: adoption of a house husband role was felt to receive widespread condemnation especially if the mother was working. Family support services had little influence on the fathering practices of Asian men and attitudes to paid childcare were varied.
The research highlights the great diversity of practices within ethnic groups and there are common elements with fathers from other UK ethnic groups, including white fathers which suggest that the design of services specifically for Asian fathers is not warranted. At the same time it is suggested that policy and practice can do more to support fathers including: supporting the transmission of language, religion and cultural identity to children; protecting children from racism; understanding that childcare takes place within the wider family; and understand how cultural norms and religious teachings influence parenting behaviours. The encouragement of more involved fatherhood requires gendered stereotypes to be broken down and high levels of father involvement legitimised. Great value is placed by Asian fathers on education and there is a need to expand initiatives that help migrant mothers and fathers gain familiarity with education system.
The research was commissioned by North Yorkshire County Council to explore the housing needs, experiences and aspirations of BME [Black and minority ethnic] and migrant worker communities in North Yorkshire.
The research took place in North Yorkshire in 2009 and included:
Participants came from a range of ethnic backgrounds: White European migrant workers, Asian, and Black people. Ages ranged from 16 to over 85 with half the sample aged between 25-39.
The report points out that migrant communities need more information about work opportunities and their rights and entitlements and employers should adopt ‘best practice’ when employing them in order to uphold their rights. ESOL [English for Speakers of Other Languages] provision should be extended and service providers need to use interpretation services whenever appropriate. It also argues that there is a need to review accommodation provision to ensure that basic standards are met, as well as accessible information for migrants about housing options and benefit entitlements and how to access them. Information Communication Technology has an important role to play in disseminating information to communities. Furthermore, initiatives such as community forums and events, which promote participation, integration and belonging should be promoted.
Similarly, BME communities also experience language barriers in accessing services and often have little knowledge of their existence. There is therefore a need to target health, housing and other services specifically at BME and communities and to make language support readily available. Evidence of high levels of isolation within BME communities and significant experience of hate crime requires social and community integration initiatives and support for victims in reporting hate crime.
Multi-method qualitative research: 50 Somali children and the majority of their parent[s] or guardians were recruited for interview as a result of snowballing through a school survey, homework clubs and a range of contacts and organisations; in-depth interviews with key stakeholders [representatives from local bodies dealing with asylum issues and various Somali education and community projects]; participant observation was carried out in local Somali community spaces, such as homework clubs. Interviews took place in Sheffield, United Kingdom.
To look at the detailed distributions of migrant workers and identify key issues emerging for local service providers in the Humber sub-region.
The research was commissioned by the Humber Improvement Partnership. The article presents counts of migrant workers published by the Institute of Public Policy Research [IPPR].
The article summarises the part of the research about the location of workers, provides a chart of National Insurance Number [NINo] and Workers' Registration Scheme [WRS] registrations 2004-2007, a distribution map of A8 / other countries and a chart of A8 nationality WRS registrations by local authority. A8 migrants are in every local authority in the UK. Concentration per 1,000 head of the population is a good indicator of the impact that migrant workers may be having on local economies and services. The population is relatively young, few claim benefits, employment rates are high, and most work long hours. The limitations of and differences between WRS and NINo data are discussed including difficulties of showing cross-border travelling from home to work, and lack of data on those here as there is no record of people leaving. Possible reasons are given for a drop in figures. Most migrant workers from A8 countries are Polish, and there are more men. WRS data indicates seasonality in work registration. Work sectors are in areas of lower skilled work.
Inward migration from A8 countries may have peaked, making it important to revisit the data in a year or two's time.
To map and explore issues relating to migrant workers in the Humber sub-region.
The research, undertaken in the winter of 2007, combines quantitative and qualitative data from analysis of official statistics [Workers’ Registration Scheme (WRS) and National Insurance Number registrations (NINo)] and from 67 interviews with organisations and individuals working with or providing services to migrant workers.
The report provides and discusses the available data on numbers of migrant workers, country of origin, geographical distribution, gender profile, age, occupations, industry, wage rates, hours worked, dependents, and planned length of stay. The analysis includes comparisons and discrepancies between WRS and NINo data and provides some statistics from other sources [eg pupil school census]. The qualitative data provides findings on population, characteristics and locations; housing; employment; education; interpretation and translation facilities; English language needs and provision; health; general advice and information provision; community safety and community cohesion; community tension, racist incidents and the role of the media; and migrant workers representation and input into the process of decision making. Each of the sections identifies areas of good practice and detailed recommendations for improvements.
The aggregation of data by local authority or parliamentary constituency limit analysis as it is not possible to cross-tabulate between variables. While some migrant workers may return to their county of origin, many will not and will settle in the sub-region.
Key agencies should develop a long term strategic vision around new community migrant workers in the Humber.
This working paper combines a literature review and analysis of interviews with 20 older refugees undertaken August to September 2006, including 5 in Yorkshire and Humber.
The literature review looks at definitions of 'older' and 'refugee' and what is known about the demographics of the refugee population in the UK. It then assesses older refugees in terms of policy and service provision areas [law, health, housing, education and training, employment, and information]. The importance of family and community networks to older refugees is discussed and gaps in knowledge and possible research areas and questions listed. The findings from interviews with older refugees provided data on age and integration, extra care and support, accessing health and other public services, group and community involvement, education, employment, volunteering and income.
Asylum seeker interviews were more likely to be suffering poor health, anxiety, hardship and despair than refugees.
To provide cultural and political context to Ethiopian and Eritrean backgrounds and to explore the oral history of Ethiopians and Eritreans settling in the UK.
Data was gathered through face-to-face interviews with 40 Ethiopians and Eritreans; focus groups that included 150 people; and notes from the researcher's diary notes that span 10 years of working with Ethiopians and Eritreans.
The report, in two parts, provides first a summary of Ethiopian and Eritrean culture and political backgrounds and second, highlights the experience of Ethiopians and Eritreans settling in the UK. Findings on settling in the UK cover reasons for coming and settling in the UK and Leeds; challenges; coping mechanisms and overcoming the challenges of migration; the impact of migration on the retention and practice of cultural traditions; and the community's contribution and impact on Leeds. Ethiopians and Eritreans came to Leeds for various reason, mostly as refugees. The asylum process is one of the most challenging aspects of the struggle to settle in the UK, along with language and cultural barriers, mental health; barriers to employment; shifting gender roles; cultural shock; and acclimatisation. Faith and community group support can assist with overcoming the challenges of settling; cultural traditions and education and training are also important. The report also presents future implications for Ethiopians and Eritreans.
The Ethiopian and Eritrean community in Leeds is arguably one of the most vibrant refugee community groups outside London, and is keen to continue to contribute to the ever-evolving multicultural landscape.
This study reports on a second survey of destitute asylum seekers and refugees approaching local agencies and aims to explore changes in numbers, patterns of destitution and consequences for service provision.
A four week survey April - May 2008 of destitute clients was carried out by five agencies. Six interviews were held with managers of statutory and voluntary agencies.
The survey suggested that destitution had substantially increased. Visits to support agencies more than doubled. The survey indicated a chronic problem of destitution including people destitute for one year or more. Those surveyed came from 35 countries: the largest groups were Zimbabwe, Iran and Eritrea. There was a significant increase in children made destitute and in rough sleeping. There was an increase in those made destitute after having their claim processed under the New Asylum Model.
The majority recorded as destitute were refused asylum seekers, although destitution can occur at all stages of the asylum process. Many people are entitled to support but are destitute because of procedural failures such as administrative errors, waiting for support to begin, and a lack of interim support measures following change of status on resolution of their asylum claim.
Recommendations are aimed primarily at the United Kingdom Border Agency [UKBA] in the government, as well as Social Services, local government and charitable trusts. UKBA should improve the process for applying for Section 4 support; improve procedures for people leaving detention; lengthen the NAM process to enable people to build connections; grant temporary leave to remain, particularly in cases where removal is difficult; and provide regular regional statistics on refusals and removals. Social Services with UKBA should implement procedures to ensure no child is refused support. Resources should be provided to struggling local agencies.
To disentangle the complex interaction between status, category, entitlements and integration support for refugees in the UK.
The report outlines 43 'types' of refugee, nine statuses granted, and eleven categories of permission to remain in the UK which are presented in reference tables. Entitlements attached to different types are outlined, including those relating to leave to remain in the UK, housing, health, employment and benefits, access to further and higher education, travel, rights to family reunion and the 'integration loan'. The report includes a glossary of acronyms and appendices that relate to 'special cases' of Sangatte and Iraqi Staff.
There is a tiering of entitlements for different types of refugees. The system is complex, requiring a high level of knowledge among refugees, refugee organisations, and mainstream service providers.
This briefing on dawn raids is part of a series that provides concise analyses of key policies and concerns relating to people made destitute through the asylum process.
Policy analysis and data from interviews with people who use the PAFRAS [Positive Action for Refugees and Asylum Seekers] drop-in.
The paper describes the use of dawn raids as part of enforcement policies to secure removals. Data is difficult to gain as people may be fearful, unwilling to relive traumatic events, or have been forcibly removed. Dawn raids are identified as a consequence of pressure to meet targets on removal, and questions of accountability are discussed.
Dawn raids seem set to continue or increase despite evidence of the suffering and harm they cause.
This briefing on mental health is part of a series that provides concise analyses of key policies and concerns relating to people made destitute through the asylum process.
Policy analysis, results of a mental health survey of destitute clients undertaken by agencies in Leeds and data from interviews with people who use the PAFRAS [Positive Action for Refugees and Asylum Seekers] drop-in.
The paper describes the links between mental health, destitution and the asylum system. Asylum seekers are likely to have pre-existing mental health concerns before they arrive in the UK. Furthermore, destitution in the UK creates mental health problems. Destitution makes effective treatment difficult.
Government plans to withdraw access to healthcare for 'failed' asylum seekers would make problems associated with mental health and destitution worse.
This briefing on access to legal aid is part of a series that provide concise analyses of key policies and concerns relating to people made destitute through the asylum process.
The paper describes the reduction in Legal Aid in 2004 and the consequences of this for destitute asylum seekers in accessing legal assistance with their claim. Destitution is identified as making it more difficult for people to access help, and more vulnerable to exploitation by unscrupulous advisors.
Many asylum seekers have suggested that they have received inadequate legal representation, often leading to the curtailment of appeal rights.
This briefing on racism is part of a series that provide concise analyses of key policies and concerns relating to people made destitute through the asylum process.
Policy analysis, results from a survey on racial harassment with 20 service users and data from interviews PAFRAS [Positive Action for Refugees and Asylum Seekers] drop-in users.
The paper discusses the issue of racist victimisation, provides some figures, and discusses under-recording of harassment. Respondents had experienced racist victimisation from the public, the police, immigration officers, and staff at immigration removal centres.
Popular racism requires analysis in a context of institutional racism.
This briefing on labour is part of a series that provides concise analyses of key policies and concerns relating to people made destitute through the asylum process.
The paper uses data from interviews with 15 people seeking asylum conducted for a study of undocumented working undertaken conjunction with Dave Whyte, University of Liverpool.
The paper focuses on the routine financial exploitation of undocumented workers. The asylum system criminalises labour. The increase in enforcement related to illegal working is discussed in relation to labour market needs. Destitution provides a disposable, exploitable labour force, leaving people vulnerable to wage slavery.
Increasing criminalisation of undocumented workers creates greater vulnerability that can be used by employers to further exploit and marginalise.
To generate information about the current roles played by refugee community organisations [RCOs] in Yorkshire and Humber; to understand their current capacity; and to investigate their understandings, expectations and roles as the sector becomes more professionalised in its approach to policy influencing.
The research team, who were refugees and / or members of RCOs or known to interviewees, interviewed 36 RCOs: 11 in Leeds, 11 in Bradford and 14 in South Yorkshire, using a semi-structured questionnaire. The report presents a thematic qualitative analysis of findings and descriptive statistics from the interviews.
The report maps RCOs in the region, their number, date of establishment, key client group demography, infrastructure, organisational capacity, funding and main roles. It is pointed out that there is considerable research fatigue among RCO members. The role of RCOs in integration and the role of Refugee Forums are discussed, and suggestions made for strategic ways forward.
The RCO sector in Yorkshire and Humber can be characterised as consisting of a very small number of established RCOs surrounded by a periphery of volatile, semi-secure and insecure organisations, all of which find themselves in competition for shrinking financial support. RCO work is focused on destitution, leaving few resources for supporting educational, health, employment and benefit needs.
Recommendations are directed at RCOs, Refugee Forums and those supporting them and relate to support, organisational strengthening, and bridging with the wider society.
The research was commissioned by Leeds City Council to gather information on the experiences and needs of A8 migrants, the implications for services and the impact upon Leeds communities.
The study, conducted between January and February 2008, combined a literature / policy review, 10 individual key informant interviews and focus groups and semi-structured interviews with 34 newly arrived A8 migrants, 24 members of established communities and 21 service providers.
The report presents and discusses findings on migration patterns, work, neighbourhood and community relations, and welfare service provision. The primary motivation for A8 migration was to access work, though Roma may be escaping persecution, and varying periods of settlement, increasing numbers of family joiners and couples mean it is difficult to identify a 'typical' A8 migrant. New A8 migrant workers were filling labour shortages; there is some evidence of an employment hierarchy with Polish workers enjoying a relatively advantaged position. There were some examples of positive mixing between A8 migrant communities and more established communities, but A8 migrants also related experiences of harassment and prejudice. A8 migrants may have had some impact on welfare service provision, but this varies across sectors with little impact on social housing.
The report offers recommendations, primarily aimed at the local authority and public services. These include improving data collection, assessing funding for maternity services and schools, funding for translation and establishing partnerships with employers to develop English language training, creating shared spaces for greater interaction, and mythbusting exercises.
To gather information on the experiences and needs of A8 migrants, the implications for service provision and the impact upon Leeds communities; and to provide recommendations to service providers.
A qualitative study in Leeds January-February 2008 that undertook semi-structured interviews and focus groups with 89 participants including Polish, Slovak, Roma and white, Pakistani and West Indian residents; key informants from employers, employment agencies, trade unions and community workers; and service providers.
The article summarises findings from the research on migration patterns, work, neighbourhood and community relations and welfare service provision. The key motivation for migration to the UK was the desire to work, and for Roma migrants, a chance to escape persecution and discrimination. The population of migrants is diverse in length of stay and type of migrant which include single males, couples and families. Employers reported that new migrant workers were taking up previously unfilled vacancies and believed it would be problematic if A8 migration ceased. Some evidence of employment hierarchies among migrants was found. Some participants were positive about new migrant workers; others had concerns related to jobs and welfare resources that should be addressed by opening opportunities for interaction. All groups had experienced prejudice and harassment. Impact on welfare services of new migrant workers varied across sectors.
The unexpected arrival of significant numbers of A8 migrants presented local authorities with new challenges, increased the numbers of migrant workers and increased diversity of the migrant population. Impacts are likely to be felt most keenly in particular, local communities that are often relatively disadvantaged.
Recommendations are aimed at the local authority, education and health services, and national policy, and cover issues including gaps in data collection, gaps in resources for education and maternity services; translation and interpreting services, developing good community relations by addressing tensions and creating spaces for interaction, and taking action on reports from A8 migrants of harassment and prejudice.
To explore refugees' understanding and experiences of integration, identify factors that may enhance or inhibit the process of refugees' integration and to allow the voices of refugees to inform understandings of integration.
The research, to inform the Yorkshire and Humber Regional Migration Partnership's regional Integration Strategy for Refugees and Asylum seekers, draws on data from three focus groups with refugees.
A background section briefly reviews approaches to integration and the policy context, identifying three routes to becoming a refugee. Three key issues from the focus groups were interactions with neighbours, activity in the paid labour market and contact with formal welfare agencies. The findings cover issues including perceptions of integration, feeling part of the local community, barriers to employment, and transition from asylum support to mainstream services.
Legislation that has excluded asylum seekers continues to have a negative impact on the integration of those granted refugee status. Despite many experiencing barriers to integration, refugees clearly value the opportunity to rebuild their lives in a new location free from persecution.
The study employed a mixture of quantitative and qualitative research and included literature review, data collection and primary research. The literature reviewed consisted of statistical data gathered by: International Passenger Survey; Annual Population Survey; National Insurance Number Allocations [NINo]; and Workers Registration Scheme [WRS]. The primary research involved a range of telephone consultations, face-to-face interviews and focus groups with employers of migrant labour, recruitment agencies, community representatives and Accession 8 [
A8] migrants. It consisted of: 2 focus groups with migrant workers and 4 face-to-face interviews with Polish migrant workers; consultations with community representatives; 6 employers from a range of industries; 6 recruitment agencies; and employees of job centre plus. The report also includes 4 migrant worker case studies and 4 employer case studies. Although the official data sources reviewed provide a good indication of the inflow of migrants into South Yorkshire they do not measure outflows and therefore it is difficult to assess the stock of migrant workers. There may be some migrants who did not register under the WRS and/or NINo.
To explore local manifestations of the asylum debate with particular attention to the dynamics between the local press and constructions of community.
The paper analyses local press coverage of dispersal in two case study locations, Cardiff and Leeds. Local press coverage is taken from the period January 1999 to July 2001.
The article shows how asylum is framed and constructed differently by the local press in different places with implications for reactions to asylum seekers and community cohesion. The relations between local press and community are explored as explanations for varying discourses. It is found that the way the local press represents and constructs local identity within local networks of power and information shapes the extent to which established discourses can be challenged. For Cardiff, the localising of asylum through the dispersal policy created an opportunity for local negotiation of difference in the context of the national moral panic on asylum.
The case studies offer very different examples, one that reinforces stereotypes and one that challenges them. The approach taken has implications for the success of dispersal policies and for community cohesion.
To assess the informational needs of Polish migrant workers, and to highlight available information resources and methods of making them available.
The research, commissioned by Yorkshire and the Humber regional TUC, reviewed information resources and undertook interviews with trade union and Polish community representatives.
The report provides some figures on Polish migrants in Yorkshire and Humber. Their need for information and types of information available, ways of making links with Polish workers, and the need for trade union collaboration with other organisations are discussed. Issues identified include transitory migration and poor employment conditions. Migrant workers need information on employment rights and settlement. Some places in the region have developed Welcome Packs, drop-ins or web-based resources; however access to this information requires engagement with Polish workers.
A more coordinated approach to providing information is needed, involving collaboration between trade unions, employers, local authorities, community and business organisations.
The report provides recommendations on how to engage with Polish workers, and for collaboration between relevant agencies to meet informational needs.
This paper provides an overview of health needs of migrants and presents a proposal to meet those needs.
The paper summarises the background and current state of migration to Yorkshire and Humber; the impact on health services; key issues for understanding a good migrant health service; the role of regional structures; and resources.
There is little systematic information on the impact of migrants on the health system.
The paper presents a proposal to the Primary Care Trust Chief Executive on areas for improvement in understanding migrant health needs and providing services.
To explore the practical constraints and opportunities that women asylum seekers and refugees face in the host society with a focus on their actions and strategies.
The research, carried out between 2002 and 2005 involved 42 semi-structured in depth interviews - 21 with women asylum seekers and refugees from 11 countries aged between 18 and 55; and 21 with key informants from statutory and voluntary organisations across Bradford, Halifax, Huddersfield, Leeds and Wakefield. Informal meetings and observation was also undertaken at two support groups for women.
The article reviews studies of women in exile and describes the methodological approach and issues of sampling and access. Findings are presented on the women's experiences of loss of status, inappropriate dispersal, and the role of agency. The limitations of lack of access to employment are discussed. The research shows that women at different stages of the asylum process had different needs; and that they are united by a determination to overcome negative experiences [in their country of origin and in the UK], and by pragmatism and creativity in moving forward with their lives.
People seek out opportunities as 'creative' agents and their actions can change the context for future arrivals.
The article discusses the resettlement of refugees in Sheffield from the Thai-Burma border between May 2005 and September 2007 under the Gateway Protection Programme. Issues faced by Burmese refugees include transition from refugee camp life, mental health needs, adjusting to life in the UK and fear of authority. Three challenges of early resettlement are language issues; problems with technology; and difficulties associated with living within a different culture and new environment.
Better preparation and more practical assistance could have eased the integration of Burmese refugees into British society.
Recommendations relate to the management of the Gateway Protection Programme, and relate to the extent and type of support offered including the provision of information, counselling, training, employment and understanding of domestic law.
The report provides a final project evaluation of a group work project for young women refugees. The aim of the project was to build confidence, self esteem and a positive identity in young women refugees and asylum seekers aged 14 to 18.
The report reviews the aims and objectives of the project, how these have been met, delivery of the project, problems encountered and the exit strategy. The project developed group work in school, college and community settings to focus on transition from school to college, and, for unaccompanied minors, from local authority care to independent living or
The research examined the factors that contribute to or undermine community cohesion in local areas with significant numbers of recent Muslim migrants and established Muslim residents.
The report is based on semi-structured interviews with 319 Muslim and non-Muslim migrants and longer-term established residents in Birmingham, Newham and Bradford; and qualitative interviews with policy-makers and service providers in each of the local areas and at a national level undertaken between January 2006 and June 2007.
The research examines findings from interviewees who included people from 40 countries with a range of immigration statuses; 72% were Muslim; and 112 were from Bradford. Issues covered include inequality [unemployment, occupation and religious and race discrimination]; places of interaction [length of residence, perception of neighbourhoods, space and interaction and support and kinship networks]; participation in the public sphere [political and civic engagement, perceptions of influence on decision-making], and belonging [transnational involvement, integration, perceptions of belonging in Britain]. The report also presents findings from local and national policy-makers and service providers on understandings of community cohesion.
Conclusions are offered to each of the key study areas, which include the importance of family ties or work for choice of locality; the significance of colleges, workplaces and family responsibilities for fostering social interaction; the need for English classes to be considered in community cohesion work, and that transnational attachment does not need to be a barrier to integration in the UK.
Suggestions for improving community cohesion work and policy are included throughout the text.
The report results from a consultation undertaken by ABCD Ltd and COEMO in Bradford on service provision and infrastructure support available to refugees and asylum seekers.
The consultation process included two focus groups with practitioners and service users and a workshop.
The report provides key points and recommendations emerging from discussions and workshops on housing, older people and health. These show a variation in the extent to which voice and influence work is integral to voluntary and community sector organisations. There are different understandings about support given to refuges and asylums seekers and the extent to which this is being subsumed by the new migrants agenda.
The needs of refugee community organisations [RCOs] and the people they serve should be met through diverse approaches to service provision.
Produce a directory of services, bridge the gap between service providers and users, establish a regionwide strategy to recognise and to develop the capacity of RCOs.
To distil the housing experiences of three Strategic Upgrade of National Refugee Integration Services [SUNRISE] pilot projects in different areas of England, and share these insights with those who will be running the new service, and with other agencies with key roles to play in housing refugees.
Research was carried out over November and December 2007. 16 structured interviews were conducted with those delivering and affected by the SUNRISE pilots in Leeds / Sheffield, London and Manchester.
The report summarises the housing issues raised by SUNRISE and draws lessons for the Refugee Integration and Employment Service [RIES] providers. It emphasises the crucial importance of housing in refugee integration, while setting out some of the myriad problems faced in accessing appropriate housing and related services, not least the short transition period of 28 days between the date of a decision and cessation of UK Border Agency support.
It is possible to identify five core requirements for setting up and running housing-related services for refugees that deliver vital signposting and links within the limited 28 day transition period: good networks, good resources, good training, good systems and good management of expectations.
The research aimed to provide data on the social and labour market experiences of new arrivals in Barnsley as a means of informing both the creation of resources to assist new arrivals and the development of a new integration strategy.
Interviews were conducted with 46 new arrivals between July 2005 and July 2006 and with 24 representatives of local support agencies, trade unions and employers. 400 questionnaires were distributed to new arrivals with 113 responses.
The article summarises findings of research into the social and economic experiences of asylum seekers, migrant workers, refugees and overstayers living in the Barnsley area. Experiences are marked by immigration status which affects entitlement to support. Migrant workers were less aware of support services or could not attend support groups due to working long hours. Changes of status were a source of anxiety, insecurity and uncertainty. Formal and informal networks are vital to the integration of new arrivals. Migrant workers may face particular challenges to integration, and may be isolated due to long hours spent in the workplace. Children may bare the primary responsibilities of arriving and integrating. There was a high disparity between the range of qualifications and experience new arrivals bring and the types of jobs people have been employed in, which reflects the local economy and labour market. Workers faced problems in working long hours for low pay, limiting non-work activities. Asylum seekers not allowed to work felt dislocated and powerless.
Migrant workers are less likely to access support services, have positive experiences of the local community or undertake learning. The contribution of new arrivals should not just be viewed in economic terms; it comes in other forms such as social, cultural and community based contributions.
There is a need to develop support services to meet the needs of all new arrivals, with attention to transitions in entitlements with change of status.
The research, funded by West Yorkshire Enterprise Partnership Ltd, aimed to develop an understanding of enterprise and employment issues in relation to new migrants in West Yorkshire, to pilot methods of increasing diversity in enterprise, and to review action research outcomes.
The research was qualitative and combined questionnaires, focus groups, 150 random semi-structured interviews with new migrant workers, and action research pilot events.
Following a discussion about defining new migrant workers, the report outlines details of the respondents and findings on barriers or problems faced by new migrant workers, earnings, access to the UK job market, and enterprise and entrepreneurship. The findings focus on migrants' perceptions of the UK, West Yorkshire and work. The report outlines key points from discussion groups with Polish and non-Polish migrant workers on reasons for coming to the UK, feelings of settlement and knowledge/ experiences of finding employment; and points from a discussion group with recruitment intermediaries.
There is no evidence that new migrant workers have travelled to the UK to start businesses here.
Recommendations are for West Yorkshire Enterprise Partnership Ltd and relate to improving information for new migrant workers about support for enterprise and business opportunities.
The report is a North Yorkshire Strategic Partnership [NYSP] strategic review of work to address the challenges from inward migration and community cohesion.
The NYSP Equality Task Group consulted with a range of public and voluntary sector organisations, employers and migrant workers from Poland.
The report outlines the strategic approach, describes partnership arrangements, and discusses migration to North Yorkshire since EU expansion in 2004. The report provides available statistics and discusses shortcomings, especially that figures may be higher than suggested by the Worker Registration Scheme data. Findings are presented from a rapid appraisal of inward migration issues in the areas of community safety, education and training, employment, housing and accommodation, health, access to information and advice and community cohesion. Some data is provided on estimated costs and effects for public services working with migrants and problems faced by migrants. Actions already undertaken include developing a Welcome Pack and tension monitoring.
Numbers of new migrants may decline which could lead to labour shortages.
The review was open to consultation and an action plan has since been written to implement the plan.
This research, for a Masters dissertation, aimed to find out about the health needs of migrant worker new arrivals from Eastern Europe and identify the obstacles they face in accessing primary healthcare.
The research is a case study in Goole including a literature review and five semi-structured interviews with health and pubic sector representatives.
Key findings relate to barriers to accessing the health system for Eastern European migrants: language as a barrier; lack of understanding of the health system and procedures; lack of integration with the local community; obstacles for GP registration; long hours in work; mobility; and lack of trust in the system.
The dissertation provides recommendations at a local and national level for improving access to primary healthcare including providing information; building trust; and bringing stakeholders together.
To conduct a snap shot of the experiences of asylum seekers whose claims were being decided in the New Asylum Model [NAM].
110 questionnaires were completed by clients on a one to one basis, with assistance where necessary from Refugee Council staff in 8 offices around the UK, 20 August - 4 September 2007.
The questionnaire found some good features within the NAM as well as areas of concern. People were not always able to name their Case Owner and some had trouble contacting them. The one to one link does not always work in practice. The speed of the process means some felt they had not had adequate time to get information to present their case or that they had not had an adequate hearing. Significant numbers of people are not able to access advice before their asylum interview. Some respondents struggled to meet reporting requirements due to lack of funds to travel or difficulties in taking children with them.
The reports suggested that the system should improve as Case Owners and others become familiar with the new processes, but that there are numerous areas for improvement which should be monitored.
The report offers a number of detailed recommendations to the Borders and Immigration Agency [now known as the UK Border Agency] about NAM policies and procedures. These cover issues including: contact between the Case Owner and client; speed of the process; legal representation; flexibility, especially to the needs of women clients; reporting requirements; child care; and homelessness while waiting for integration arrangements.
To explore young asylum seekers' definitions and experiences of 'home' and 'belonging' at a time of transition to adulthood and adjustment to life in the UK.
A three-session focus group was conducted with seven students [aged 18-25] attending an informal English language class at a young people's resource centre, plus four semi-structured interviews with two females and two males.
The article reviews the literature on asylum seekers' constructions of 'home' and experiences of housing. The methodology and ethical concerns of the research are discussed. Findings are presented that relate to home and time, home as 'normal' life, counter-narratives on home, support networks, home as safety and racist harassment.
Home for young asylum seekers can be seen as multi-layered and multi-dimensional incorporating material and emotional aspects, private and public space, and local, national and transnational attachments. Young people had renegotiated 'home' and 'belonging' through their migration pathways in parallel to their transition to adulthood.
To provide an overview of the health needs of the dispersed asylum seeker population in Wakefield and their experiences of accessing primary care services.
The report includes a review of literature on the health needs of refugees and asylum seekers, analysis of induction centre health data, and data from two focus groups with staff and a survey of 49 asylum seekers and 49 members of the general population.
Survey findings cover issues including being understood; knowledge of services; expectations of the health service; access to primary care; and improving services. Responses from asylum seekers are compared with responses from the general population showing differences in expectations of health services and health status. The report provides information on entitlement to NHS treatment and includes the questionnaire used and full findings in appendices.
Use of high cost telephone lines creates inequality of access by asylum seekers. Asylum seekers are more likely to expect to be seen quickly, but may need longer appointments to deal with complex needs. The survey suggests that asylum seekers experience significantly higher physical and mental ill health than the general population.
The report offers detailed recommendations aimed at primary care services focussing on improving equity of access, the need for a different model of access to primary care, mental health needs, improving communication methods, the needs of pregnant women or those with young babies.
The article reports on research to explore the complex influences on young Somali refugee and asylums seekers' identity formations in different geographical sites and according to different arrival scenarios.
Research in Sheffield and Aarhus, Denmark included a survey and interviews.
The number of Somalis in the UK is difficult to estimate due to mixed forms of migration and limitations of data collection. Young people countered the stigma of 'refugee' and 'asylum seeker' labels by emphasising their pride in Somalia. Most left when they were young or were born on the move; knowledge of Somalia is gained from family, friends or media. There was a general wariness about publicly claiming a British identity in case it was seen as a rejection of Somali heritage, or because it is imagined as a white identity. This contrasted with the experience in Denmark which has different reception policies. Many of the young Somalis in Denmark had encountered significant experiences of discrimination, which may contribute to secondary migration once they have a European passport. Some of those in Sheffield described experiences of racism, but this was countered by a broader perception of safety and trust. Feelings of security are important to belonging to a nation. Children tend to learn the language of the settlement country quickly and may take on responsibilities by assuming a role of family interpreter. The issue of language is often a cause of intergenerational tensions. Differences in language spoken at home or at school could contribute to relative underachievement of Somali children.
Place or context is important in shaping how individuals develop and perform their own identities and how they are understood by others. A sense of 'belonging' in a country develops where a community has a sense of security and space to define its own identity beyond or alongside narrow prescriptions of national identity.
Policies that are implemented to support Somali young people to integrate into the UK must enable them to retain and develop a strong sense of their own cultural identity and heritage, while also supporting them to access education, services and similar life opportunities to the rest of the population.
The official data [Worker Registration Scheme and the National Insurance Number registrations] do not provide an indication of the concentration of the Accession 8 [
A8] migrants within Sheffield.
To provide an overview of issues for refugees and asylum seekers in Leeds to inform service developments and future commissioning of health and social care services.
Data was gathered by a small multiagency group on current services and demand, November 2007-October 2008. The report draws on monitoring data, issues raised through the regional health group and material from the Yorkshire and Humber integration strategy consultation.
The report provides an overview of definitions, the asylum process and resultant issues, entitlements and available statistics. National, regional and local organisational structures and agencies working with asylum seekers and refugees are described, mapped and level of service use indicated. Voluntary and statutory service providers in health with some focus on refugees and asylum seekers are listed. The report discusses demand for services and issues around service provision in primary care and related services, such as homelessness services. Key health issues outlined are destitution, access and communication, mental health, isolation and discrimination, physical health needs, and housing for single healthy men. Gaps in provision include interpretation, dental services, mental health, sexual health, and physical health. There had been some recent developments in guidelines and frameworks have local impact, suggesting improvements in monitoring and a need for strategic recognition of migrant health issues.
The report offers conclusions relating to health services, based on the assertion that increasing number of refugees will settle in Leeds. These include: poor housing, low income and lack of employment are linked to health; subsequent social isolation affects mental health; destitution affects all health and social services and contributes to public health issues; the local Health Access Team is recognised as a model of good practice; the local authority service [LRAS] provide a valuable coordination role.
Recommendations are aimed at health services, partnerships and coordinating bodies, especially a need to refresh and improve working between local commissioning structures and national/ regional specialist policies and developments. Recommendations relate to interpreting services; training for generic staff to reduce discriminatory practice; recognition of the pressure of destitution on services; incorporation of refugee and asylum seeker needs in mainstream services; reviewing mental health services; commissioning research on health needs.
The report compiles empirical evidence on population and migration to inform the Yorkshire and Humber Assembly’s response to the Secretary of State’s proposed changes to the Regional Spatial Strategy [RSS] and to assist local authorities in the development of their Local Development Frameworks [LDF].
Secondary analysis of a range of Government statistics and associated projections form the basis of the report
The report suggests that international migration will be a significant driver of population change in the United Kingdom in the next 25 years and that within the Yorkshire and Humber region this will equate to a 5% increase in the projected population. However, there is considerable uncertainty about the level of inflow of workers from the Accession countries to the region. These population projections will lead to aggressive targets for new dwelling completions, placing pressure on a flexible and responsive supply of land.
The report notes that the Regional Planning System will need to manage both the increase in the level of house building as well as its profile, density and affordability while at the same time ensuring the quality of new housing. The future balance of short term and long term migration will have implications for housing provision: short term residents will lead to high levels of housing churn while longer term migrants will look to secure more permanent, better quality housing. The report suggests that measuring international migration through ‘real time’ intelligence is essential to support the development and monitoring of its key policy initiatives.
The report was undertaken by Take Part for Yorkshire Rural Community Council to improve understanding of the issues facing migrant workers in rural South Yorkshire.
The research included analysis of existing publications, telephone interviews with voluntary, community and public sector representatives, face-to-face interviews with key stakeholders, focus groups with migrant workers and interviews with people from EU states.
The report provides an overview of the recent context of migration from new EU states and discusses issues of estimating numbers. An overview of migration is followed by findings on settlement areas in South Yorkshire, integration and social cohesion, education, health, housing, work and spiritual wellbeing. The report includes a list of some key national and local studies and local examples of engaging Slovak and Czech Roma families in nursery education and work by South Yorkshire police to engage with new migrants.
Barriers and issues are identified and recommendations to improve them aimed broadly at voluntary, community and public sector organisations, employers and others. These include the need for language provision to improve English, including in the workplace; resources for translation and interpretation; information and knowledge about rights and services; improving initial contact and introduction processes; and improving perceptions of migrants.
The report is part of a Joseph Rowntree Foundation funded project to explore the housing experiences of new immigrations during the first five years of settlement in the UK.
In depth qualitative interviews were undertaken with 39 new immigrants, including nine Somali people - three women and six men, aged between 19 and 42 years old. All had arrived in the UK as asylum seekers; eight had been given leave to remain in the UK.
The package of rights and opportunities associated with being an asylum seeker was an important determinant of arrival experiences. Most Somali new immigrants were directed to Sheffield by the
NASS dispersal programme. All of those who took part had decided to remain in Sheffield. They followed a far longer and more complicated pathway into permanent accommodation than the other new immigrants interviewed, largely due to the limitations of being an asylum seeker. Poor housing situations, the importance of place and affiliation, and the challenges of engaging with the housing system are outlined.
The report is part of the Older Refugees Programme that aimed to encourage the development of appropriate services and policies to address the needs of older refugees and asylum seekers.
The report focuses on two listening events [West Midland and Yorkshire and Humberside] that brought together local and regional refugee community organisations with policy makers. The Yorkshire and Humber event was attended by approximately 40 participants.
The report provides proceedings from the presentations, workshop discussions, responses from listening services providers, and an evaluation summary. The Yorkshire and Humber event included workshops on health and social care; housing and family / community networks; and education and employment, legal issues and advice. The issues discussed focus on the particular experiences of older refugees including isolation, nutritional needs, intergenerational problems, mobility, overcrowding, access to English classes, and barriers to employment.
The conclusions are drawn together from the two listening events and one in London around health and wellbeing, housing, education and training, legal issues and advice, and family and community networks. Services are rarely tailored to the specific needs of older refugees.
The aims of the research included to establish current principles of effective practice in language teaching and learning adult English for Speakers of other Languages [ESOL], to document adult student progress and to establish correlations between pedagogical practices and student progress.
The research used a quantitative and qualitative multi method approach that included analysis of classroom statistics; 256 student assessments; 40 teacher and 76 learner interviews and observation of 40 ESOL classes: 20 in Greater London and 20 in Yorkshire [Leeds, Bradford, Keighley, Dewsbury, Halifax, Shipley and Pudsey], Humberside [Hull] and Lancashire.
Against a backdrop of the complex socio-economic and political contexts of ESOL and pressures on demand, the report presents detailed findings on teacher duties and experience, teaching strategies, progress made by students in different areas of learning, provision of ESOL, course structure and study time. Ten classroom case studies illustrate dimensions of effective practice that scored highly in the analysis of teaching strategies and learner involvement.
The learners in the study reflect increasing and constantly shifting super-diversity in British cities, were relatively young, many were asylum seekers and were highly motivated despite difficult lives. A number of conclusions on elements of effective ESOL practice are provided.
Recommendations are grouped into development work and quality improvement and policy and are aimed at teachers, educational institutions and policy makers.
The report is part of a Joseph Rowntree Foundation funded project to explore the housing experiences of new immigrants during the first five years of settlement in the UK.
In depth qualitative interviews were undertaken with 39 new immigrants, including ten Liberian respondents: six women and four men aged between 20 and 38 years old, all had arrived as refugees under the Gateway Protection Programme.
The package of rights and opportunities associated with being a refugee under the UN Gateway Protection Programme was an important determinant of the arrival experiences of Liberian new immigrants. All of those who took part had decided to remain in Sheffield. Liberian refugees had a short housing pathway into permanent housing. Family breakdown is a major risk to residential security. Finding accommodation was the first priority rather than place of residence. Liberian respondents differed from Somali and Pakistani new immigrants in terms of views of living in particular neighbourhoods.
To review research into employment and skills of asylum seekers in Yorkshire and Humber to address the perceived lack of knowledge of this subject area within key regional organisations, policy and decision-making bodies.
The report provides findings from existing studies, summarises data from four significant reports and reviews the methodology and scope of existing studies.
The review found that the findings of the reports are often inconclusive, contradictory or not comparable. Notable gaps in evidence relate to the employment and skills of refugees in their country of origin, which is crucial to understanding their experiences in the UK. There is clearer data about refugee employment and skills in the UK, most significantly identifying the importance of English language to refugees and showing that a high proportion of refugees are not in paid employment.
Limitations of sampling and numbers of respondents limit the representativeness of existing studies, particularly relating to gender [few studies include women], and nationalities. Some findings are out of date, and there are large evidence gaps that may act as a potential barrier to improving the contribution of refugees to the region's economy and integrating them into society.
The report recommends that key regional organisations fund a comprehensive skills audit of refugees in Yorkshire and Humber, including barriers to progression, to feed directly into relevant strategies and policies.
This briefing on detention is part of a series that provides concise analyses of key policies and concerns relating to people made destitute through the asylum process.
Policy analysis and data from interviews with people who use the Positive Action for Refugees and Asylum Seekers [PAFRAS] drop-in.
The paper provides some figures on those in detention and describes the use of detention as a form of coercion and criminalisation. The paper also discusses issues of contracting out detention to private companies.
The suffering of destitute asylum seekers is further silenced by a coercive policy climate which uses destitution as a policy to remove people from the country.
This briefing on Section 4 support is part of a series that provides concise analyses of key policies and concerns relating to people made destitute through the asylum process.
Policy analysis and data from interviews with people who use the Positive Action for Refugees and Asylum Seekers [PAFRAS] drop-in.
The paper describes Section 4 support and the criteria for accessing it. Issues with securing Section 4 support, with the quality of housing and with voucher support are discussed.
Contracting out the provision of Section 4 support has fostered a market whereby many recipients are scared, vulnerable, and open to exploitation.
The Churches Regional Commission for Yorkshire and the Humber [CRC] provides information and resources to equip churches and faith practitioners for their role in regeneration of the region's communities.
The briefing paper introduces a Biblical background to hospitality and justice and outlines key issues relating to migrant worker employment. The paper outlines a definition of migrant workers; their rights and entitlements; discusses their contribution to the economy and vulnerability to exploitation; effects for public services; describes the Gangmasters Licensing Authority; and their contribution to churches. These issues are illustrated with case studies of work undertaken to welcome and support migrant workers. A list of ideas for what churches can do, useful organisations and resources are provided.
The report briefly discusses migration to Hull and describes how some Polish migrants have worked with the Polish Association and church representatives to address the needs of Polish migrants, leading to the formation of 'Hull Together'. Hull Together supports the welfare of all migrant groups, and has worked with Indian and Filipino Associations.
The project has emphasised self-help, with the professional expertise of individuals from education, health, police, housing and employment services to bring the people of Hull together.
To map the extent and nature of slavery, review the evidence on key areas of slavery in the UK, particularly forced labour, debt bondage, sexual slavery, and children trafficking and labour as a contribution to the debate about slavery and the conditions under which it is still possible for it to happen.
The report, commissioned by the Joseph Rowntree Foundation, reviewed published literature, unpublished policy papers provided by service delivery agencies, and websites. Interviews were undertaken with key actors.
The report reviews definitions of slavery, available data and difficulties in measuring slavery. Modern slavery in the UK is discussed in relation to the international context of types of slavery, estimates of numbers and agencies involved in working around slavery. The discussion of slavery in the UK addresses places and types of work, forms of control, government responses and provides case studies from around the UK, including Yorkshire and Humber.
The report recommends national action on slavery, victim-centred responses, resources for enforcement, training on how to identify slavery conditions and a public awareness campaign.
The article assesses the influx of labour migrants and makes recommendations on what needs to be done in response.
The article describes types of migrants, estimates of numbers, sectors of employment and the context of recent policy and political concern over migration. The patterns and effects of migration to the UK and Yorkshire and Humber are outlined, including likely trends of return migration and the economic value of migrants.
The terms of the debate that regard migrant workers as a threat are wrong: they are vital to the success of rural and urban economies.
These are directed at employers, trade unions, local authorities, education and training agencies, and central government. The recommendations relate to working conditions, use of migrant skills, information on employment rights, provision of English classes, and use of migrant labour.
The research aimed to gain a better understanding of how BME housing markets in West Yorkshire are operating and changing.
The study, commissioned by the West Yorkshire Housing Partnership, included a review of relevant literature and secondary data sources, interviews and discussion groups with relevant stakeholders, small surveys in key locations followed by focus groups, and the production of BME population and household projections.
The report covers the regional and sub-regional strategic context [West Yorkshire housing markets, BME housing markets, community cohesion]; BME settlement patterns [established communities, new communities]; and future BME population and household growth. Existing patterns of settlement among minority ethnic groups are compared with recent trends, especially relating to asylum seeker dispersal and the rise in migration since 2004 of A8 migrants. The report suggests that asylum seekers granted refugee status tend to enter the housing market hurriedly, with limited support, usually into private rented accommodation in established BME neighbourhoods. Migrant worker locations are hard to track. It is thought that most live in private rented accommodation in central areas of the main urban centres. The report discusses future population projections in relation to demand for housing and differences in projected settlements patterns across the sub-region.
The housing pathways available to BME communities have tended to be restricted to a narrow set of options, and there is a risk of further marginalisation. New migration is difficult to predict but can be expected to be an ongoing feature.
Recommendations are aimed at policy and practice in housing and relate to improving the labour market prospects of BME groups; improving awareness of the purchasing power of economically mobile BME households; provision of a range of housing options; and a strategic response to meet the needs of new communities and limit possible negative effects.
To provide a detailed picture of the projected demographic change in Yorkshire and Humber to inform the Yorkshire Assembly.
The research uses available National Statistics on population and household estimates and projections.
The report discusses methods for and limitations of projection and estimation of population, internal and international migration; trends in migration and population change; and understanding regional patterns in the national and international contexts. The report also addresses the sensitivity of regional population change to future international migration flows.
Conclusions relate to the lack of a definitive measure of the total number of migrants; economic needs of an expanding population; and housing needs and development.
The study was funded from the European Social Fund to identify migrant workers' experiences in the West Yorkshire, North Yorkshire and Humber labour markets and their support needs.
The study reviewed literature and research and analysed available data sources. Interviews or focus groups were undertaken with 13 employers of migrant labour, 14 job brokers, and 6 community representatives. Fifty four A8 migrants took part in 5 focus groups and 6 were interviewed.
The report provides estimates of migrant worker populations in Yorkshire and Humber and presents issues emerging from existing research on skills, occupations, barriers and support for migrant workers. The research offers findings on motivations, aspirations, recruitment processes, employment experiences, language issues, community integration, and support services.
Migrant workers have had a positive impact on labour markets; quality and availability of data needs to be improved; improving English language skills is important; there are a variety of views on intended length of stay among migrants.
The recommendations, aimed at a wide range services, employers and landlords cover issues of planning services, language, qualifications, information, cohesion and accommodation.
To draw together sources of information and conduct research on the situation of European Roma in South Yorkshire in recent years.
The research undertook 35 semi-structured interviews with Slovak Roma individuals and families in Rotherham and Sheffield and two informal focus groups with 17 young Roma people in Rotherham and Sheffield. A formal focus group and event in Rotherham was attended by 73 Slovak Roma.
The report reviews the national context and recent history of Roma in South Yorkshire, focusing on Barnsley. The enlargement of the EU is discussed and available data on numbers and population of Roma provided. The research focused on housing and related issues: private sector housing, education and health, racism and harassment and work. It is argued that European Roma face multiple disadvantages in housing, education and other spheres of life.
Chiefly, the report recommends consultation and participation of Roma people in the policy-making and implementation process. Recommendations are aimed at public sector bodies and relate to quality and regulation of housing and accommodation, information on employment rights, understanding banking, funding for schools, raising awareness of Roma issues, and research to improve knowledge of Roma populations.
The report is part of a Joseph Rowntree Foundation funded project to explore the housing experiences of new immigrants during the first five years of settlement in the UK.
In depth qualitative interviews were undertaken with 39 new immigrants, including 10 Polish people - five men and five women aged between 22 and 55, all of whom were in paid employment. One had arrived to study, nine to work, though only four were registered with the Workers' Registration Scheme.
The early housing careers of Polish migrant workers are characterised by insecure accommodation situations. With restricted access to benefits and no formal organisational support Polish new immigrants were entirely reliant upon their own financial and social resources to negotiate access to accommodation. Polish new immigrants tend to be in the private rented sector and most managed to secure a tenancy within a month of arrival. Their right of work and ease of finding employment facilitated securing accommodation in the private rented sector, but they were exposed to unsatisfactory, insecure and poor living conditions. The intended temporary nature of settlement is a critical determinant in attitudes to place.
The report assesses the effectiveness of the pilot
Section 9 project run by the Home Office.
The pilot ran from December 2004 to December 2005 and covered 116 family units in London, Leeds and Manchester. A control group of 116 cases dealt with under normal casework procedures was identified to match for nationality and family size. The report provides data on the cohort and control groups, quantitative outcomes on uptake of return from the pilot and stakeholder feedback. A range of stakeholders were consulted to inform the assessment of the effectiveness of the pilot and its processes. Key areas of concern were impact on families and children, difficulties for local authorities in reconciling conflicting principles of child welfare and section 9, and demands on local authority resources made by the pilot.
The evidence from the pilot taken in November 2005 indicates that there was no significant increase in the number of voluntary returns or removals of unsuccessful asylum seeking families; the pilot did not influence behaviour in favour of cooperating with removal.
To identify gaps in refugee infrastructure support, needs of refugee community organisations [RCOs] and to provide a clearer understanding of refugee organisational capacity in Bradford.
The research, funded by ChangeUp, is based on questionnaires completed by 21 organisations providing services to refugee organisations and 27 individuals with experience of services offered by RCOs.
The report presents findings on the diversity, size and nature of RCOs, the types of services they provide, and views on the prioritisation of services. Issues of adequate and appropriate funding in relation to needs are discussed. Gaps are identified in terms of multi-agency work, legal support, referral to infrastructure support organisations and development plans.
There are disparities in services, a lack of clarity on what resources are available to RCOs, particularly related to confusion about services are accessible to asylum seekers. Standards of service are variable. There is concern that increased numbers of migrant workers will lead to RCOs being marginalised by local authorities and service providers.
The report suggests short term and long term action plans to address RCO capacity, continued monitoring of RCOs, resourcing, meaningful partnerships, and ESOL provision.
To explore whether the presence of African ancestry can be genetically traced in people regarded as ‘indigenous’ British in the United Kingdom.
DNA was taken from males in the UK and the USA: using electoral rolls, a random sample of R-surnamed males were selected. Each person completed a questionnaire with the aim of excluding close relatives, to prevent their similar genetic profile from skewing the results. A total of 421 British males were recruited, each describing themselves as British, with paternal grandfathers born in Britain. The DNA samples were subject to genetic testing.
One male was identified who shared genetic markers with Western African populations [the significance of which is outlined below], despite no obvious physical or historic indicators of African heritage. A further 18 males with the same surname were recruited. This name was derived from a specific settlement in east Yorkshire, and a significant number of bearers are still found in the area. Genealogical research was carried out on 7 members of this group who were found to share the same genetic markers as the first male, to assess possible familial relationships.
The markers, which are found in only 5.4% of the African population today, have previously been detected globally in just 7 individuals described as being from non-African indigenous populations. Notably, the most common markers found in genetic studies of Africans were not detected in the sample, despite statistically being more likely to appear if there had been substantial African migration in the past, suggesting only a small historical presence.
The existence of a male from the UK sample with such markers has proved the first positive identification of African ancestry in ‘indigenous’ Western European populations, although their historical presence has been known in Britain from Roman times. By comparing the samples with 7 males who also carried the marker, the research team estimated that the relevant chromosome has been present since at least the mid-18th century, and possibly earlier. This conclusion was based on genealogical and genetic research which traced a shared heritage occurring before 1734. It was not possible to estimate whether the marker was introduced a short time prior to that date or significantly earlier.
The study demonstrates that African ancestry is present among ‘indigenous’ British people, but the existence of an unusual genetic marker shows that predicting African origin by using the most common markers associated with African lineages must be advanced with caution. The authors speculate that survey bias of DNA sampling may be one cause of low detection rates of African ancestry among previous studies.
European Journal of Human Genetics
To map new migrant communities in the UK and identify possible consequent development opportunities.
The research, undertaken by the Social Policy Research Centre at Middlesex University, was commissioned by Refugee Support. It reviewed available data and interviewed statutory and co-ordinating bodies, local policy makers and voluntary organisations in 12 localities in England. Three of the localities were in Yorkshire: Leeds, Sheffield and Doncaster.
The report reviews available sources of statistical data, provides maps of WRS [Worker Registration Scheme] and NINo [National Insurance number] distribution in England, and describes the selection and approach to research in the 12 localities. Data from statistical sources and interviews is analysed and findings and limitations discussed in relation to the movement of migrants, categories, transience, long term and family settlement, local intelligence and future trends. The main needs of new migrant communities are identified, including in terms of housing [advice, supply, conditions, security, homelessness]; destitution; language provision; employment; health; legal advice; and integration/ community relations. Local partnerships and policy initiatives are briefly listed.
Recommendations, aimed at statutory and voluntary housing providers and other services, cover housing advice, specialist housing, accommodation for the destitute, English language teaching, interpreting and translation, health access, legal advice and support, and community cohesion. The report specifically identifies Yorkshire as an area in need of an advice and support hub for new migrants.
To examine local agency concerns of increasing racist hostility and violence in an area of low-income social housing in Leeds to gain a better understanding of how racist hostility works and to inform an effective response.
Fieldwork was carried out January to June 2007 with victims, residents and agency staff.
The findings of the research evidence reports of racist violence in Leeds; describe victims' experiences, discuss how racist hostility may emerge, and examines the responses from agencies. The research shows that racist hostility and violence in Leeds has proved to be highly durable, despite increased levels of reporting and improvements in policies and practices of relevant agencies. Community-wide patterns of racist hostility have been left largely untouched by dealing with individual perpetrators or victims. The research identifies experiences ranging from widespread, overt hostility to covert everyday talk. Drivers are described, including perceptions of unfair or preferential treatment.
Victims identified the failure of agencies to respond effectively given widespread racist hostility and the weakness of enforcement processes. Local agencies stressed a desire for more effective work with local communities and the need to improve implementation of race hate policy.
The report presents the outcomes of a public meeting held with Polish new migrants, 9 July 2006 organised by the Polish Centre with statutory agencies to inform new migrants about their rights and responsibilities. The key issues raised are outlined, which include housing, benefits, health, advice, employment, registering for work, crime and the law, and driving. Copies of leaflets distributed at the meeting are reproduced in the report, and agreed actions are listed. The report also briefly presents the context of a rise in migration from Poland since EU enlargement, including some data on numbers registering for work in Leeds, telephone translation and National Insurance numbers issued. Observations based on the work with the new Polish community include the need for information, desire to learn English, family migration and reliance on relatives for childcare.
The research was commissioned to inform the Joseph Rowntree Charitable Trust Inquiry into Destitution among Refused Asylum Seekers. It explores the impact of destitution on asylum seekers and agencies in Leeds, how people attempt to meet their basic needs, the challenges for agencies and the possible solutions.
The research between September and December 2006 included: a four-week survey of destitute clients involving five key agencies; interviews with eight refused asylum seekers; 23 interviews, two focus groups and a questionnaire with agencies; and participant observation at two drop-ins.
Most of those destitute were refused asylum seekers, including families. Some had been processed by the New Asylum Model [NAM]. Destitute asylum seekers rely upon friends and charity from voluntary organisations and churches to try to meet their basic needs. People remain destitute for protracted periods. This has an acute impact on their wellbeing, and can lead to self-harm and suicidal thoughts. Rough sleeping was common for some, including women. The response to destitution has involved campaigning and provision of support, but agencies are hampered by lack of resources, reliance on donations and restrictions on refused asylum seekers' entitlements. This support provides a vital lifeline, but may conceal the seriousness and extent of destitution from decision makers. Some of those destitute benefit from support 'in the community' but for others dependency can facilitate exploitation. Staff in supporting agencies are left demoralised and emotionally drained in trying to meet basic needs which diverts from integration-focused activities.
Linking support to asylum claims creates destitution. Destitution in not a deterrent, nor does it encourage return. Section 4 is not the answer to destitution: many people are unable or unwilling to take it up. Voluntary return cannot be the only option for refused asylum seekers. The destitution caused by asylum policy contradicts other policies including those on reducing homelessness, community cohesion, children's rights, race relations and social exclusion.
Regularisation - give asylum seekers the right to work; improve legal representation and decision-making for asylum claims; provide clear guidance on support and improve communication between refugee agencies, statutory bodies and the Home Office; monitor NAM outcomes - early indications suggest the need for improvements to quality of decisions, timeframes, training for staff, and presentation of options for voluntary return.
The thesis addresses conceptualisations and manifestations of community among people who have claimed asylum in the UK and examines the influences of policy on these social processes. It aims to contribute some everyday perspectives from individuals often marginalised in research and public debate.
A 14 month ethnography in 2003-2004 employing participant observation with people from 12 countries, focusing on 14 men and women and extending to a further participant field of 40 asylum seekers, refugees, refugee community organisation leaders and members and community development workers.
Conditions in the country of origin and UK policies create insecurity that shapes social life and affect the way that 'community' is experienced. Policy infiltrates daily life through housing control mechanisms, shaping capacity for home-making. Secrecy is a vital tool in managing social life in conditions of precariousness. Refugee community organisations, parties and social events form around new social groupings that include some and exclude others. Music, dancing, dress and food create some familiarity but do not simply represent 'home' culture. They create moments and places to contest both continuity and adaptation to the UK. The central importance of food highlights the particular role of women in reproducing community.
Ephemeral forms of 'community' allow for a sense of shared values in the context of fluidity. Recently-arrived refugees do not live in a community, but engage with [or avoid] community moments.
This is the final report of a project in Hull to provide a community based therapeutic service to refugee and asylum seeking children and families, to promote access to statutory services and to build effective partnerships.
The report describes how the Haven project developed, the type of work undertaken, networking, problem areas and successes. Members of the team are introduced and the early stages of setting up the project are described. The report outlines the main themes of therapeutic work and key elements of successful work with refugee families. The importance of networking is discussed and organizations the Haven Project engaged with are listed. Problems identified include the position of the voluntary sector, tokenism, lack of holistic assessment, and over-reliance on GP referral. Successes included building trust, partnerships, and participating in discussion and consultations.
The Haven Project has provided an innovative, flexible and culturally sensitive and effective resource to Hull's asylum seeking and refugee population and to organizations trying to build skills appropriate to a rapidly changing demography.
To assess the experience Section 4 claimants have using vouchers and gift cards in Sheffield.
A qualitative survey was conducted with 33 respondents accessed through the Northern Refugee Centre advice drop in and M&Q office where vouchers are distributed.
The report identifies a number of problems with the cashless voucher system relating to: being unable to use public transport to shop or collect vouchers; stigma; isolation without money to pay for telephone or internet use; expense of shops that accept vouchers, and not getting change; getting the right foods for health needs; and not being able to buy appropriate foods, a haircut or clothes.
The voucher system creates practical problems, hardship and psychological problems, leaving people angry, isolated and feeling victimised, punished and exploited.
Replacement of vouchers with cash support through legislative change. In the interim, the introduction of a Visa gift card [such as the 'Mint card']; offering bus passes; allowing choice of a mixture of vouchers and gift cards; delivery of vouchers or multiple collection points.
The research aimed to identify and assess the exact nature of the needs of refugee community organisations [RCOs] to provide guidance to deliver sustainable infrastructure support to RCOs.
The research combined a review of literature, 359 RCO questionnaires [including 24 respondents in Yorkshire and Humber], and unstructured interviews with RCOs.
The report addresses key trends in the wider voluntary and community sector and positions RCOs within the broader context. RCOs face particular challenges in gaining access to funding and support in the context of funding pressure and competition between increasing numbers of voluntary organisations. Existing support for RCOs is reviewed, highlighting consistent themes in infrastructure issues facing RCO. The support needs of RCOs which took part in the survey are identified relating to size, geography, composition, services offered, and the development needs of RCOs. The report provides some benchmarking data for RCOs across the nine English regions and offers policymakers the opportunity to target infrastructure support in a way that can address the gaps identified and build on the strengths of the sector.
Limited specialist support currently exists to support RCOs and that which is in place is unevenly distributed and inaccessible to many or most RCOs.
A comprehensive support framework is required to allow consistent support to be provided to RCOs across England.
The report evaluates the work of a Children's Society LEAP pilot project to explore the impact of having a worker to support families in accessing education and related services and to identify additional barriers to children gaining access to education.
The pilot project worked with 69 children aged 4-18. The evaluation provides data from the project on referrals and support offered.
The report describes and evaluates the pilot project, referrals, support offered and interaction with other agencies. Findings are presented on asylum seeking families with specific needs who required little support, those with multiple needs who required significant support and unaccompanied asylum seeking children in the care of social services. This work is described in relation to support with contact with schools, negotiating transport, accessing entitlements, legal representation, health services, English classes, and making community links.
The LEAP project had a positive impact on Education Leeds Admissions' team's ability to deal efficiently with applications. There is a particular difficulty for unaccompanied asylum seeking children in gaining access to education.
Recommendations are aimed at Education Leeds, the local authority and the Home Office, and relate to improving liaison between agencies to meet the educational needs of asylum seeking children, improved understanding of the role of housing providers in orientation and induction, and further funding to continue support for children and families.
The report is part of a Joseph Rowntree Foundation funded project to explore the housing experiences of new immigrants during the first five years of settlement in the UK.
In depth qualitative interviews were undertaken with 39 new immigrants, including 10 Pakistani people - six women and four men aged between 24 and 43 years old. All were married, nine were with their spouse, six had dependent children. Seven arrived on a Spouse Visa; three entered as migrant workers.
The residential circumstances of Pakistani new immigrants arriving in the UK on a Spouse Visa reflected their reliance on their spouse for a place to live. Pakistani migrant workers stayed with family or friends upon first arriving in the UK before moving into private rented accommodation. No Pakistani new immigrants had entered the social rented sector, reflecting their restricted right of access to welfare benefits, including social housing. Informal networks important for accessing housing. The report identifies issues of housing experiences including that a breakdown in relations could result in homelessness, overcrowding, frequent moves to improve living conditions, and that place was more important than housing to the residential preference of the Pakistani new immigrants.
The research, funded by the Joseph Rowntree Foundation, explores the arrival experiences and settlement stories of new immigrants.
The project team worked in partnership with six community researchers to complete in-depth interviews with 39 new immigrants living in Sheffield during 2006 and 2007. Interviews were conducted with 10 Liberian, 10 Pakistani, 10 Polish and 9 Somali new immigrants.
The research focuses on the housing experiences of new immigrants and considers the consequences of their arrival for local housing markets and neighbourhoods. The report provides a detailed examination of how arrival experiences are determined by immigration status, associated legal rights and related opportunities. New immigrants fill voids in housing stock; poor housing conditions are associated with temporary accommodation; long-term accommodation may be insecure; and developing an affiliation to place is important. Issues of access to the housing market and residential spaces that new immigrants enter are discussed alongside analyses of the consequent policy challenges.
Over time some new immigrants were able to exercise greater choice about where they lived, but this was often dependent upon the support and assistance of friends, relatives and community-led services.
To explore what integration and 'Britishness' means to refugees and factors that aided or hindered integration.
Life history research was conducted with 30 people who are refugees who had been in the UK for varying lengths of time up to 50 years, from Europe, Africa, Asia and Latin America, male and female, aged 20 to 64, in London, the South East, the South West and Sheffield [5 interviewees]. This included biographical interviews and a visual questionnaire.
The report presents findings on pre-arrival factors, arrival, institutional integration, social interactions, political and community participation, acculturation, identity and belonging, and the Britishness debate. This includes rich and detailed data on the factors that have aided or impeded integration, both institutional/functional [employment, education, housing] and social/citizenship [friendships, leisure activities, volunteering, political engagement]. The report investigates feelings of belonging and identity, in terms of British or local identity, being a refugee and Britishness.
Refugees experienced a 'discongruity of belonging'. Britishness was not fostered by local integration in the workplace and neighbourhood, but was experienced nationally through appreciation of freedom and space. Based on data from interviewees and literature, the research suggests six facets of integration: contentment, interaction, participation, equality, respect and rights.
Most research about refugees and asylum seekers is about adults. This research aimed to address young asylum seekers' identities and affiliations.
A multi-method research design combining a quantitative in-depth survey of 3313 young people [years 7, 9, 11] in schools and qualitative research in Sheffield, UK and Aarhus, Denmark including participant observation, interviews with Somalis, interviews with stakeholders, a web forum and art workshops.
Somali children gain their understanding of what it means to be Somali from their families and communities. Forced mobility means the identity 'Muslim' becomes the most important way for many young Somali people to define who they are. Young people are wary of claiming a British identity as it is implicitly still imagined as a white identity. Community space is important to define identities and to give security to feel belonging to the nation. Integration policies which stress national identity may legitimise negative attitudes towards migrants and their cultures. Somali children [and their parents] receive very limited support at school to learn English. Intercultural differences are emerging between generations. Young people commonly feel their parents do not understand their experiences of trying to integrate. A crisis of masculinity and lack of male mentors is contributing to a high incidence of youth offending. There is an emerging - but hidden - culture of smoking and drinking among Somali young people which has implications for the development of health education initiatives.
A sense of 'belonging' in a country develops where a community has a sense of security and space to define its own identity beyond or alongside narrow prescriptions of national identity.
Recommendations are aimed at national integration and education policies and local groups. The key recommendation is that policies to support Somali young people to integrate must enable them to retain and develop a strong sense of their own cultural identity and heritage, while also supporting them to access education, services and similar life opportunities to the rest of the population. Funding is needed to develop educational support such as Somali community homework clubs. 'Meaningful contact' between Somali and white majority groups should be promoted.
To establish the aspirations of young refugees to access to higher education and whether these aspirations were being supported, to identify the barriers and to examine whether homogenising their support needs within those provided for other minority ethnic groups is sufficient.
A mixed method qualitative approach was taken with extensive semi-structured interviews with 18 young asylum seekers and refugees and eight parents, 37 web-based questionnaires were completed by educational and support organizations plus 10 interviews undertaken. A series of activity-based discussion groups were held with young refugees and unaccompanied asylum seekers in Leeds.
The research produced findings around emotional support needs, high aspirations of individuals, the impact of poverty on access to education, lack of knowledge about the UK education systems, the effects of uncertainty over immigration status, inadequate and interrupted educational backgrounds, language needs to improve English, lack of encouragement to access FE / HE, and issues specific to unaccompanied young asylum seekers who face multiple barriers.
There are high levels of aspiration among young refugees, so their continued under-achievement and under-representation in UK higher education represents a failure by educational institutions and support services to provide adequate advice and guidance.
The handbook aims to give information and ideas to develop work that promotes good sexual health among asylum seekers and refugees.
The handbook, based on community research, was funded by the Department of Health and written by the Asylum Seekers and Refugees Sexual Health project set up by the Centre for HIV and Sexual Health, the Family Planning Association and tandem communications and research.
The report provides a background to terminology of sexual health and of asylum and immigration. The policy context, NHS services and voluntary sector organisations involved in sexual health are outlined. The report provides detailed chapters with guidance, research findings and practice examples on sexual health and human rights; sexual health and the asylum application; general good practice guidance; refugees, asylum seekers and sexual health; sexual health issues, sexual health promotion; peer education; and the roles of refugee community organisations and community research. Sources of international information and an extensive list of useful organisations and websites are provided.
The handbook provides ideas to promote sexual health among asylum seekers and refugees.
The objective of the research was to identify and illustrate the health needs of Somali women and offer recommendations for service providers to implement change.
The research was conducted by Bradford Resource Centre on behalf of East Leeds Health For All with funding from Leeds City Council. 3 focus group discussions and 23 qualitative interviews were conducted with Somali women. Key service providers and Somali community organisations were also consulted.
The women who participated were suffering from extreme trauma and isolation. Poor living conditions, pressures of parenting, and hostility from the indigenous population had an adverse effect on physical and emotional wellbeing and caused stress. Barriers preventing the women from accessing appropriate health services needed included difficulties in communication, lack of knowledge about the institutions and practices in the UK, and a lack of understanding among service providers of the specific health needs of Somalis. Problems relating to urinary infections and menstruation were common; some spoke of personal experiences and effects of female genital mutilation [FGM]. Some women had experienced minor incidents or racist comments that they did not let affect them; others had experienced death threats and harassment ostensibly exacerbated by terrorist events, Islamaphobia and anti-asylum sentiment. Muslim faith was important and a source of strength and unification among Somalis.
Changes to diet and level of activity, a high prevalence of stress-related symptoms and adjustments to the British climate make for increased medical needs and frequency of appointments. It is likely that FGM was more common than was disclosed. Half of the sample lived alone or were head of the household - there were clear needs for practical and emotional support. There was a greater reliance on informal rather than formal support.
Recommendations are directed at health services, language support and other agencies. Improve cultural sensitivity and awareness of medical practitioners and service providers to the needs of asylum seekers and refugees, of stress-related symptoms and FGM. Offer female doctors and interpreters; improve support for women who have experienced trauma. Provide appropriate childcare to relieve pressure and prevent isolation. Provide prompt and effective support for families experiencing racial harassment, quick relocation when at risk; advocacy and awareness in reporting hate crime. Signpost those wanting to contact family to the British Red Cross Tracing and Message Service; improve awareness among agencies of each other’s services.
To illustrate the extent of new migrant labour in Yorkshire and Humber [United Kingdom] and the origins of this new workforce.
The article analyses National Insurance Number [NINo] registration statistics.
Despite the increasing importance of international migration there is no single system to measure the movement of people. NINo data provides some indication of recent trends in labour migration. The use of NINo data is discussed, and statistics provided [2002-2006] showing distribution across UK regions, numbers in Yorkshire and Humber, region of origin, top 20 countries, and distribution across local authorities in the region.
Administrative datasets provide an invaluable source of alternative statistics to help understand evolving patterns and trends in local populations to inform planning and provision of services. The regional economy relies on inputs made by migrants workers.
The report provides a review of the work of the Bradford Central and Eastern European Working Group to provide a tool for others interested in supporting new accession state migrants integrate.
The report looks at why people from EU accession states are moving to the UK in relation to conditions in the country of origin and the UK labour market. Key groups and areas of residence in Bradford are reviewed. The report describes how the working group formed and assesses the work done by the group, including regular meetings and consultation work with people from Central and Eastern European countries.
Agencies are willing to adapt services to new arrivals - communication between agencies is important, and improved systems to respond will assist present and future accession state settlers.
Detailed recommendations from the consultation are aimed at a range of service providers in areas of the economy and jobs; education; health and social care; community safety and community cohesion; and environment and homes.
To evaluate the views of Leeds Health Access Team for Asylum Seekers and Refugees clients to determine a client perspective on the service.
Semi-structured interviews were conducted with seven asylum seeker clients.
The evaluation assesses, illustrated by quotes, experiences of accessing services; the content of the appointment; social support; perceptions of what the service is doing well; and offers suggestions for improvements from the interviewees.
The Health Access Team is providing an accessible and highly skilled service that participants were very satisfied with.
Some recommendations are offered on improving access to the service, further research needs; and the role of multi-agency partnerships.
To identify the composition of migrant workers in Goole, how well council services had responded and any issues of integration.
The report is based on analysis of similar studies in the region, discussion, interviews and a questionnaire with service providers, data provided by ESOL providers and a survey of 27 migrant workers.
The report provides findings from service providers on services offered and changes to services in response to migrant worker needs; on migrant workers' experiences; and on perceptions of migrant workers among enforcement agencies. Most services do not target migrant workers. Library services and the leisure centre are popular services with migrant workers. Most work in manufacturing and arrive in summer. Perceived tensions may be higher than actual level of tension, fuelled by negative press.
There is a lack of data and no way of knowing the number of migrant workers in Goole and East Riding. Although most are likely to be working in Goole there are some in other localities across East Riding.
Recommendations are aimed at local services, partner organisations, and local authorities and relate to collection of demographic data, developing a welcome pack, translation services, improving links with employers and across services, and support for social groups.
The case study investigated the role that migrant workers are playing in the Humberside economy and the contribution they make in ensuring an efficient labour market for local employers.
The case study is part of the wider 'Attracting Talent' study that examines migration trends and their economic impacts in Yorkshire and Humber and other regions of the UK.
The study looked at the number of migrant workers in the Hull economy; the economic participation rate of migrant workers; skills migrant workers have; sectors of employment; the role of migrant workers in filling sectoral gaps and whether migrant workers are getting jobs below their potential skills level.
There has been an overall rise in migrant worker inflows. Economic participation rates vary widely across the sub-region. Construction is a significant employer. Employers value 'soft' skills as well as work rate. Migrant labour is plugging gaps in industry labour shortfalls.
To explore migration trends affecting Yorkshire and Humber and the role that migrant workers have in addressing skills shortages and gaps and employer interventions in this area.
The report is based on analysis of official data sources including National Insurance registration and the Labour Force Survey; other Experian data sources; and consultations with key commentators.
The report addresses migration in Yorkshire and Humber and the need for migrant workers in the future. Available statistics are used to describe numbers of migrant workers and sectors of employment in relation to recruitment issues. Processes used by employers to recruit overseas workers are outlined. The report then reflects on the prospects for the working age population, and what skills shortages migrant workers might be required to fill in the future.
The purpose of the report was to inform the Leeds NEPCT directors and managers of the increased issue of destitution among 'failed' asylum seekers in Leeds.
The report is based on data gathered by the Health Access Team on destitute clients.
The report addresses the issue of defining who is destitute and hidden homelessness and reviews estimates of destitute asylum seekers in Leeds. Reasons for a recent rise in estimated numbers are discussed, including changes to
Section 4 support, and the
Section 9 pilot. Areas of concern and health implications are outlined: rough sleeping, staying with friends or community, Section 4 support, pregnancy, families, restrictions on entitlement to primary and secondary NHS health care, and mental health. Organisations and initiatives working to address the issue of destitution among asylum seekers in Leeds are listed.
The report makes a series of recommendations to the Board of the NEPCT to address concerns about the health implications of asylum and health policy for failed asylum seekers and their children.
This is a report of a regional event on migrant workers which aimed to provide participants with background to recent migration, offer opportunities to discuss issues raised and share good practice.
The event was attended by 140 people and included presentations on migration and workshops.
The report summarises three presentations on recent migration, statistics, employment and migrant needs; and reports on issues, points raised in discussion and key messages from six workshops. These were: policy, information and coordination; local economy and labour market; engaging with migrant communities; community cohesion; improving service responses; and communication and understanding.
The report outlines conclusions and ways forward identified on the day on ensuring coordination and leadership, improving information about migrants, engaging with communities, better information and communications for new arrivals, helping service to respond and community cohesion.
The article analyses the admittance of Iraqi Kurds as 'work visa holders' when the Sangatte camp near Calais was closed in December 2002.
Interviews were conducted with 15 respondents found by snowballing through co-nationals.
The article reviews the emergence of 'work visa holders' as an ad hoc response to the closure of Sangatte in relation to work and asylum in immigration policy. The difficulties of tracing the work visa holders are discussed. Findings present the work visa holders' stories relating to their intention to reach Britain, the decision to take up the offer of a limited visa, their experience of entry into the UK, responses to a three month waiting time in hotels, settlement and finding jobs. Other issues include their understanding of their status, educational experiences, and intention of staying in the UK.
A rigid distinction between labour market recruitment and humanitarian protection is artificial as the search for both political and economic freedoms is common to most immigrants from less developed countries. The Iraqi Kurds were adaptable, quickly used whatever opportunities were provided, and would have cost the taxpayer very little if their accommodation had been resolved more quickly.
The research aimed to provide data on the social and labour market experiences of new arrivals in Barnsley to inform both the creation of resources to assist new arrivals and the development of a new integration strategy.
The research, commissioned by 'Investing in a Multi-Cultural Barnsley' and conducted between July 2005 and November 2006, took a multi-method approach, combining semi-structured interviews and focus groups with 48 asylum seekers, migrant workers, refugees and overstayers; interviews with 24 representatives of community groups, labour market agencies and statutory bodies; and 113 questionnaires with migrant workers, asylum seekers, refuges and overstayers.
The report presents findings on access to support services; housing, schooling, healthcare and relations with the local community; qualification, skills and employment; and the realities of work and experience of labour market exclusion. These include quantitative analysis of survey findings, case studies, and qualitative material. There is relatively widespread use of formal support services by asylum seekers and refugees, but use by migrant workers was more limited. There are some key differences in eligibility to, access to and experiences of housing, health, schooling and relations with the local community according to immigration status. There was a high level of education, qualifications and skills among respondents, though most were employed in low skilled, labour intensive and low value added employment suggesting a widespread mismatch between experience and current employment and significant underutilisation of skills. Asylum seekers' exclusion from the labour market created frustration, powerlessness and a desire to make a contribution.
The report offers a number of conclusions, which include; the social and economic experiences of new arrivals vary markedly by immigration status; change in status has profound effects creating insecurity, anxiety and uncertainty; the development and sustenance of both formal and informal networks of support are vital to the integration of new arrivals.
The research was commissioned by the Travellers Health Working Group to draw together information from agencies working with Roma people, the views of Roma people about their lives here and background data on Roma in Europe.
The research included a questionnaire with 36 households, an agency questionnaire on service delivery and emerging issues, and case studies of Roma families collated by workers.
The report provides some background to Roma in Europe, findings on Roma in Leeds, experiences of Roma in Leeds, their issues and future needs. These findings include: Roma have come to Leeds from Eastern European countries seeking asylum and as EU citizens. Roma are the largest pan-European minority, and have suffered a history of discrimination and persecution. The number in Leeds is not known, but the population is thought to be young with a high number of children. Families live in the private rented sector and tend to be highly mobile, affecting children's wellbeing. Roma have come to Leeds to work but are likely to be in low-paid insecure employment. Lack of English is a barrier to progressing in employment and accessing services. Poor health is a concern.
Roma people are likely to have multiple needs and to experience problems of poverty, poor health, and poor housing. There will be an increased need for appropriate and accessible services due to the young population with a large number of children, and the possibility that new Roma migrants will come from countries acceding to the EU in future years.
Recommendations relate to improving appropriate services for Roma people in Leeds, including play services, advocacy and advice, skilled interpreters, recognition of needs among mainstream service providers, forming an interagency group, identifying Roma health needs.
The briefing discusses a background to recent migration and provides available data on the numbers, countries of origin and places of residence and work of migrant workers. Reasons for migration to Britain and the Humber, issues of employment conditions and migrant aspirations are outlined. Other issues covered include views of employers in recruiting migrant workers, workforce issues, exploitation, skills and experience, impact on the labour market and the implications of migration for the Humber area.
There has been a rapid increase over the last two years in the number of overseas migrants who have mainly taken low skilled work in important sectors of the area's economy; there is little evidence of direct effects on local unemployment but there may be longer-term influences. Migrants bring skills and qualifications which are often little used.
The briefing describes National Insurance number and Workers' Registration Scheme [WRS] data, its limitations and provides some figures on numbers of migrant workers in the East Riding of Yorkshire, their country of origin compared with national data and place of residence and work. Nationally available data does not allow an accurate estimate of the migrant worker population, but suggests a substantial increase in the number of foreign nationals in the last two years.
The report is part of research by the Audit Commission to examine the role of local authorities and partners in addressing the challenges posed by current and future international migration.
The reports presents findings from meetings with 50 staff from local authorities, public sector agencies, employers and voluntary, community and faith organisations in contact with migrant workers in Kingston upon Hull and the East Riding of Yorkshire in May 2006; and eleven telephone discussions and reviewing documentation.
The report outlines available migrant worker data on numbers, country of origin, residence and location of work in relation to the local job market in Hull and East Riding. Findings on responding to the impact of migrant workers cover coordination, developing a strategic response, data and intelligence, and information for migrant workers. The effects for specific services are discussed, including adult education, advice services, health services, housing, police and community safety, schools and children's services, and social care.
A number of issues for central government are identified including issues related to employment agencies, translation of key documents, support for ESOL, vehicle registration, and guidance on the legal position of migrant workers.
This paper is one of a series of community profiles commissioned by Sheffield City Council. The aim of the paper is to provide a profile of the Eastern European community in Sheffield, United Kingdom.
The methodology adopted include: consultation with service providers about existing information on this community; consultation with Black and Minority Ethnic [BME] communities about their views about what information should be included within the community profile; secondary analysis of existing data sources; door step interviews with a sample of BME adult residents; and a series of focus groups with local communities. However, it is acknowledged that the household survey was very small and unable to provide any robust data, the qualitative research proved difficult to implement and ultimately no new data was forthcoming.
According to the 2001 Census 1300 residents of Sheffield were from Europe although not necessarily the Accession 8 [
A8] countries and generally they were not concentrated in any one part of the city. With the free movement of migrant workers from the A8 countries this figure has increased although the level of the increase is not known. Information from the Asylum Team and anecdotal evidence suggests a particular influx of people from Albania, Romania and Bulgaria.
The paper concludes that the information available is vague but it is likely that the number of people resident in Sheffield who were born in Eastern Europe has grown to several thousands from the 1300 cases identified in the Census. It also suggests that the new migrants are predominantly young adults.
The paper explores what local housing providers and community development workers feel are the prerequisites for successful housing integration.
The paper draws on literature and semi-structured interviews with seven community development workers in Leeds [two], London [two], Liverpool, Manchester and Leicester, and information discussions with statutory housing providers.
The paper discusses the induction process, ongoing support, 'move-on' support for new refugees, and the need to combat racist harassment. Housing is identified by the government as a key dimension for refugee integration, yet the evidence suggests that many asylum seekers and refugees experience housing deprivation and insecurity. There is a lack of certainty about the precise meaning of housing 'integration', what it can and should achieve, and how progress towards integration can be measured. The implementation of initiatives has been uneven and there are many obstacles to progress.
Despite good intentions and some localised successes, there are still many obstacles to refugee housing integration, which arise from multiple gaps in provision, choice and support.
The paper investigates migrants' perceptions and experiences of urban greenspaces.
The Viewfinder Project used innovative participatory and visual [photography] methods over 12 weeks including visits to 10 greenspaces in Sheffield.
The paper describes and discusses the methodological approach, first impressions of visits to open spaces, ongoing independent visits and the implications of the research for understanding the role of visiting greenspaces for experiences of integration and belonging. The paper discusses how and why the participants engaged or disengaged with local greenspace in the short and medium term. In particular, the importance of memory and nostalgia in participants' experiences; the significance of plants; the novelty of visiting British 'parks'; and the role of greenspace in enhancing the quality of life of immigrants are explored. Recognition of landscape elements or characteristics can provide a conceptual link between former and new homes. However, for this refugee group many physical and psychological barriers must be overcome if the full benefits of urban public open space are to be realised.
Public open space can play a role in providing a positive impression of the local environment, and meaningful participation in it can be a useful component of integration into a new society.
The Viewfinder project aimed to pilot an innovative methodology that would be responsive to the complex nature of landscape perception and use to explore the perceptions and use of urban greenspace in Sheffield by a group of refugee participants.
The project developed a methodology that combined an accredited basic photographic course with a qualitative research project that included weekly visits to public open spaces, taking photos and discussion with six refugee participants from five countries.
The article presents findings, including photographs, on perceptions of greenspace and encountering place in the city, the park, the garden, and the woodland; memory and association in landscape experience; and refugees and reflective nostalgia.
Engaging with greenspaces had a positive role in the interplay of place, culture and identity by unlocking expert knowledge, providing a different means of conceptualising home, and by giving a sense of common human experience.
The aim of the study was to examine Refugee Community Organisations [RCOs] and Refugee Community Forums [RCF] participation in and influence on regional decision making structures.
The report was conducted by the Social Business Company for the Yorkshire and Humberside Refugee Community Development Workers' Network and interviewed 22 RCO, RCF and voluntary sector representatives.
The report describes how RCOs and RCFs might develop to affect policy through local and regional structures and partnerships, the need for capacity building for RCOs, organisations that support them, and links to other regional forums.
Many of the conditions and structures to allow effective involvement already exist, but strategic investment in RCOs and RCFs and a more strategic approach to communication between local, regional and national bodies is needed.
Recommendations are aimed at RCOs, refugee supporting agencies and regional partnerships to clarify roles, reporting procedures and to improve joint working between mainstream and refugee voluntary sectors.
The research, commissioned by Yorkshire Futures, aimed to provide a set of population projections for a wider initiative examining the future economic development of the region.
The research uses an Ethnic Projection Model [EPM] developed by the School of Geography at the University of Leeds to make population predictions.
The report provides statistical data, charts, graphs and maps showing population projections generated from the EPM for the Yorkshire and Humber region, metropolitan districts, unitary authorities and North Yorkshire districts by age group and ethnic group. Also, the EPM projection process is explained.
EPM projections indicate a growing, ageing population, with different rates of growth among different ethnic groups.
To explore some of the ways in which Yorkshire and the Humber has responded to the dispersal of asylum seekers and the challenges ahead.
The article reviews the establishment of the dispersal system with reference to the Yorkshire and Humber region, local and national difficulties, the number and nationalities of dispersed asylum seekers 2002-2006, and issues of integration and settlement. Current and new proposals are discussed that include the Gateway Protection Programme, Sunrise refugee integration project and the New Asylum Model.
The asylum sector has undergone constant change. Dispersal has changed the face of parts of the region and has helped to regenerate communities.
The Yorkshire and Humber Regional Review.
To conduct a mapping exercise to identify national, regional and sub-regional diversity initiatives aimed at both employers and individuals.
The research, by the Back to Work Company for the Fair Play Partnership, was conducted through desk research and telephone contact with relevant organisations to gain baseline information, identify service provision, identify useful practice and what is new in the region and to identify gaps. These existing initiatives are described and discussed. The amount of support for employers varies significantly with clear disparities between the sub-regions.
The report presents findings on diversity initiatives at national, regional and sub-regional levels. The Yorkshire and Humber region as a whole has a wide range of initiatives to promote and support diversity and issues around diversity. However, it was not possible to say how aware employers of all sizes and from all sectors are of the different services available. The report identifies lack of support for employers on refugees, asylum seekers and migrant workers as a key issue.
The report provides a number of conclusions in relation to diversity initiatives and support for employers, and suggests that limited support for employers in relation to refugees and migrants can create suspicion among employers and increases the barriers to employment for refugees and is a waste of their skills.
Recommendations to improve diversity initiatives, information, and awareness among employers are provided.
The report aims to help policy makers, volunteer managers and a wide range of organisations to do more to enable refugees and people seeking asylum to take part in high quality volunteering opportunities across the UK.
The research included background reading, three focus groups with professionals and case studies of ten organisations outside the refugee sector that are involving refugees and people seeking asylum as volunteers, including two in Yorkshire and Humber [Leeds and Sheffield]. The case studies included interviews with 33 refugees and people seeking asylum.
The report includes an outline of the policy context; findings on getting started, recruitment, volunteering, leaving volunteering and follow on; and ten case studies. Key issues include raising awareness among refugees and people seeking asylum of volunteering, raising awareness among organisations that refugees can volunteer and how to reach them, Criminal Records Bureau [CRB] checks, supporting the pioneering volunteer, integration, adequate resourcing, the role of the volunteer coordinator, the role of intermediary organisations, improving work opportunities, offering worthwhile experiences to all and volunteering by young people.
Recommendations are aimed at the government, intermediary organisations, funders, volunteering organisations including public sector bodies, and social workers and young peoples' advocates. They cover promoting volunteering, funding to build diversity, sharing good practice, reviewing CRB check processes, and actively enabling young refugees to volunteer.
The report provides a summary of a training and support project for refugee community organisations [RCOs] in Yorkshire that aimed to develop capacity and good practice in regard to volunteer management.
The report describes the training process and activities. Two refugee trainers and eight organisations were involved. Information gathered about the RCOs during consultancy visits provides details of activities, communities served, size and resources, roles and volunteer tasks, funding and resources and how volunteers were managed. The results of an evaluation of the course addresses expectations of the training and changes to volunteer management after the training.
The report offers reflections on what worked well such as the 'modular' approach, communication, creating useful links and a high ratio of facilitators to participants.
To determine whether existing HIV / acquired immunodeficiency syndrome [AIDS] services in Leeds meet the needs of HIV-positive asylum seekers.
The research was a qualitative study using semi-structured interviews with seven service providers and 14 HIV-positive patients at Leeds Centre for Sexual Health, six of whom were asylum seekers.
Asylum seekers and UK residents were equally satisfied with HIV / AIDS services at Leeds Centre for Sexual Health. Other agencies such as the Health Access Team and Terrence Higgins Trust had different strengths that provided valuable support of this client group. Unmet needs of asylum seekers were identified, such as specialist services for torture victims and educational opportunities.
Despite the stigma and negative media portrayal of both HIV and asylum seekers, service providers were highly motivated and committed to providing quality services. Current HIV / AIDS services in Leeds are able to meet the needs of asylum seekers. In areas of asylum seeker dispersal with increased case loads, this methodology may inform development of client-centred care networks.
Recommendations are aimed at health services. Current services will need to expand to cope with increased demands. Certain needs of HIV-positive asylum seekers remain largely unmet, including: specialist services for those who have experienced torture, befriending schemes; access to primary health care; training and education; continuing need to address stigma.
To investigate the narratives of housing and 'support' service provision under dispersal.
The chapter draws upon the interviews with members of a local authority asylum support team.
The role of professionals required to fulfil a range of often seemingly conflictual and contradictory roles of care and control is examined, and the possibilities of a dialogical, 'polyphonic' approach to narratives discussed. The research identifies varying notions of 'support' and how these are talked about within the asylum system in relation to 'support' as control, dilemmas of 'support' and integration, and encouraging acceptance into local 'communities'.
By adopting ideas of dialogism workers can be seen as negotiating apparently contradictory roles of being carer and controller simultaneously.
The Churches Regional Commission for Yorkshire and the Humber [CRC] provides information and resources to equip churches and faith practitioners for their role in regeneration of the region's communities.
The briefing paper presents information and case studies from a seminar on transient communities in October 2005.
The paper introduces the idea of transient communities and the context of discrimination and prejudice towards migrants that is often based on lack of information. The role of the Church in relation to migrants is outlined. The briefing paper outlines basic facts about asylum seekers, gypsies and travellers, and migrant workers. The paper includes brief case studies of church-based work with these groups, a list of ideas for action and a list of resources.
The paper offers ideas for prayer and for voluntary / campaigning actions by individuals to support transient communities.
To explore the feelings, hopes and experiences of asylum seekers' arrival, induction, access to services, contact with local residents and hope for the future.
The research, commissioned by Wakefield and Sheffield City Councils, included mapping asylum seeker populations, local agencies and refugee community organisations; interviews with 57 asylum seekers and seven discussion groups and interviews with local authority policy officers.
The report provides an overview of the regional and local contexts of dispersal in Wakefield and Sheffield. Findings from asylum seeker interviews are presented on arrival and induction experiences - powerlessness, choice and control, services on arrival, and social relationships; and about accessing services including housing, destitution, health, legal advice; and on restrictions to work, good and bad experiences and press coverage. Feelings about safety and security; involving asylum seekers in policy and service development, and hopes for the future are also addressed.
Tendencies to treat asylum seekers as a homogeneous group can be dehumanising and disempowering.
Recommendations are aimed at central and regional government, local authorities, housing providers and the voluntary and community sector and relate to dispersal policy and practice, rights to welfare and to work, quality control, improving induction and involving asylum seekers in consultation.
The study reports on an enquiry into the state of race relations in Hull.
The enquiry, conducted from July to December 2004, collected 87 individual submissions of evidence by inviting contributions through local media outlets, public, voluntary, faith and community sector organisations; and a review of local press coverage.
The report presents key themes of evidence provided, which include: the history of racist behaviour; the influence of the management of the arrival of refugees and asylum seekers; casualised acceptance of racist behaviour and language; improving the public image of refugees and asylum seekers; failure of agencies to translate statements into action; and actual or emerging activity confronting racism.
There is a dismal picture of the state of race relations in Hull. However, there are also indications of positive change.
The recommendations are aimed at widespread organisations and at individuals with various suggestions for improving race relations, such as supporting minority ethnic organisations; race equality training; reporting racist incidents; and monitoring race equality work.
The study aimed to map migrant workers in the Selby area and to identify needs and resources.
Local organisations, employers, and the local authority were consulted.
The report summarises issues relating to employment, housing, needs, and resources. Most migrant workers are employed in farming and food processing sectors, often for low pay. Views on relations between local and migrant workers in the workplace are outlined. There are some areas with concentrations of migrant worker housing, often in houses of multiple occupancy leading to concerns about fire safety. Seasonal agricultural workers often live in caravans on site. Needs expressed by workers were language, decent housing, information, childcare, dental care and advocacy. Available resources, organisations and services to meet some of these needs are listed.
The report recommends that the Selby Communities and District Industrial Mission broker an event to bring stakeholders together.
The research aimed to explore the extent to which forced migrants' basic financial and housing needs are being met.
Semi-structured interviews were conducted with 23 forced migrants [5 refugees, 7 asylum seekers, 6 people with humanitarian protection and 5 failed asylum seekers] and 11 key respondents involved in the delivery of welfare services between January and June 2004.
Benefit rights are linked to socio-legal status creating a tiering of entitlements for different groups of forced migrants. For the majority of forced migrants, welfare had been reduced to little more than subsistence level. Destitution of forced migrants ineligible for public welfare was a concern and increasingly the charitable / voluntary sector and other forced migrants have to fill gaps in provision. Refugee community organisations [RCOs] are a potentially valuable resource which offer mutual, emotional and practical support, but their existence is precarious. Housing issues raised included the adequacy and standard of accommodation, finding new accommodation in the short transition period on gaining refugee status, and widespread homelessness among failed asylum seekers and reliance on other forced migrants.
Statutory provisions are failing to meet the basic housing and financial needs of many forced migrants. The burden of providing basic welfare is increasingly on charities, churches, RCOs and other forced migrants.
The paper discusses EU and UK policy and draws on research on meeting basic needs of forced migrants in Leeds that included interviews with 23 forced migrants and 11 key respondents involved in the delivery of welfare services.
The paper explores the welfare of forced migrants at a supranational [European Union], national and local level. Member states are increasingly keen to deflect the problem of forced migration sideways on to other states. Many European states have looked to separate out and reduce the social rights of forced migrants. The welfare rights of certain forced migrants have been 'hollowed out'. Devolution of power to individual housing providers has led to variable and sometimes substandard provision. In the absence of state provision non-governmental organisations become key welfare providers. The welfare rights of forced migrants are subject to the dual process of separation and erosion.
Nation states have used supranational and localised networks of governance to deter the entry of unwanted forced migrants and, simultaneously, national governments have reduced or eradicated the welfare rights of forced migrants.
To highlight the main findings of a study, 'Meeting Basic Needs?', funded by the Economic and Social Research Council, on the basic welfare of forced migrants in Leeds.
Semi-structured interviews were conducted with 23 forced migrants [5 refugees, 7 asylum seekers, 6 people with humanitarian protection and 5 failed asylum seekers] and 11 key respondents involved in the delivery of welfare services.
Despite political debate that sees asylum seekers as taking jobs and exploiting welfare systems, many forced migrants in the UK routinely face poverty and social exclusion in everyday life. Changes to national policy over a decade have focused on deterrence, exclusion of forced migrants from mainstream welfare systems and reduction in welfare rights. Dispersal to Leeds, numbers and housing provision are outlined. Benefits available to forced migrants are set at levels that promote poverty: basic needs of many forced migrants are not being met. Destitution is a real but hidden problem. Other issues to emerge are homelessness, very poor standard housing, hostility and a desire to work and contribute.
In the short term improvement in the welfare available to forced migrants in the
NASS system or who have been refused is unlikely, and the basic needs of forced migrants will continue to be marginalized.
The article recommends an end to 'Section 55', which denies access to welfare for anyone who does not make a claim for asylum within 72 hours of entering the UK; and enhanced support for asylum seekers who receive a positive decision.
To present refugee stories to help work together to develop a positive, understanding and diverse community in Hull.
Asylum seekers and refugees were interviewed about their experiences of living in exile in Hull.
The booklet presents stories of exile and settlement with photographs and other pictures. The refugees featured include male and female adults and young people from Kurdistan, Iran, Algeria, Kosova, Turkey and Zimbabwe.
To understand the housing market needs, aspirations and number of asylum seekers and to examine the role of particular localities in the housing market in Hull.
The research undertook 90 interviews with asylum seekers and refugees in September and October 2005.
The research was intended to help the Hull Pathfinder Renewal scheme develop its approach to housing market renewal. The report outlines the characteristics of the respondents [immigration status; gender; nationality; length of time in Hull], asylum and refugee accommodation, desire to stay in Hull or to move, tenure aspirations, employment and qualifications and future aspirations.
To understand the housing market needs, aspirations and number of migrant workers and to examine the role of particular localities in the housing market in Hull.
The research undertook 100 interviews with migrant workers and 10 with key businesses employing migrant workers in September 2005.
The research was intended to help the Hull Pathfinder Renewal scheme develop its approach to housing market renewal. The report outlines the characteristics of the respondents [gender; nationality; children] and provides figures from national statistics. Data is provided on length of time in the UK and reasons for moving; employment type and location; education and income; current accommodation type and tenure; and future aspirations.
To obtain a profile of new communities, map service delivery and to explore challenges and issues of integration faced by new communities and how well local services were responding.
Analysis of available statistical and other information; discussions with service providers, community and support groups and leaders; and a questionnaire completed by 73 members of new communities.
The report provides profiles of new communities with estimated numbers based on limited available data from various sources including the census, ESOL providers, and employers. Definitions of immigration status and issues affecting refugees and asylum seekers and migrant workers are outlined. The report also outlines national and local features of employment, education and service provision issues; accommodation and housing; health and social issues; and discrimination and harassment.
Recommendations are directed at statutory and community service providers and include the need for monitoring and data, sharing and combining services, improving recruitment and employment practices, ESOL provision, enforcement of housing standards, health provision, and promoting integration.
To explore the experience of training and employment of refugees across Yorkshire and Humber.
The research, funded by the Learning and Skills Council, included secondary data analysis and strategic consultations, 424 face to face surveys, 8 focus groups and 36 in depth interviews with refugees accessed through refugee community organisations [RCOs] and other points.
The research attempts to enumerate the asylum seeker and refugee population from available data and extrapolation from the survey, and provides information gathered on language clusters in dispersal sites. Findings are presented from interview and survey data on employment, learning and skills, and access to services and community involvement.
Broad recommendations are offered that relate to provision of advice, modes of communication to refugees, educational courses, English classes, and housing advice / access.
The review aimed to consider, at a strategic regional level, the needs of an individual asylum seeker from arrival to a final decision, describe the current situation, and propose measures about what needs to be done.
The report, written by the Yorkshire and Humberside Community Legal Service [CLS] Asylum Forum, reviews legal advice and information provision for asylum seekers and refugees based on feedback to the Forum from members [including the Legal Services Commission, Yorkshire & Humberside Consortium and Refugee Council].
The report provides overviews of legal advice services and issues in Barnsley, Bradford, Calderdale, Doncaster, Hull, Kirklees, Leeds, North East Lincolnshire, North Lincolnshire, Rotherham, Sheffield and Wakefield. Changes to asylum Legal Aid effective April 2004 are summarised.
Conclusions and recommendations aimed at the Home Office, legal advisors, and widespread services are provided in four areas: access to Legal Aid and effects of cuts on making an asylum application; the role of health including medical reports and mental health; the role of
NASS and problems with procedure; community cohesion, social inclusion and integration including issues for unaccompanied minors, access to and entitlement for services, destitution, racial harassment, employment and domestic violence.
To explore local databases and information sources to help measure the local effects of migration and to examine the wider issue of the impact on local communities and economies of increasing international migration.
The report includes data from a literature review of newspapers and other popular media, and government, non-governmental and academic literature; and secondary quantitative data review and results of qualitative surveys.
The report introduces the area of migration studies in relation to diversity and difference, costs and benefits, types of migrants and available numbers. Findings from the review, which evaluate existing data and highlight gaps in research and data, are presented in relation to demography and geography, community relations, culture and sociality, economy, polity, health and social services, housing, and education. The idea of impacts and short term or long term impacts is discussed.
A great diversity of data is required to estimate the impact of international immigration on local communities.
The review provides a list of areas for data collection, including the need for information at a local level, large national surveys on migrants including longitudinal elements, accounting for migrants in all primary data collection, and investigation of the psychosocial wellbeing of migrants.
This report was commissioned by the Drugs Strategy Directorate of the Home Office to explore khat use and treatment issues in England, to identify the adequacy of current drug service provision and to make good practice recommendations.
The research, carried out between January and March 2004, included 45 interviews with Somalis, Ethiopians and Yemenis in six locations [including Sheffield], 11 focus groups, and three discussion groups with professionals working in drug and related services.
The report [in English and Somali] discusses the findings from interviews and focus groups on patterns and trends in use; khat use and gender; and attitudes to khat. Khat use is identified as interacting with other problems including unemployment, family and community breakdown, social and service exclusion and trauma. The research also provides experiences of health and drug services and perspectives on service delivery and good practice.
Recommendations are offered for community-based solutions that address communication, education and harm reduction, counselling and support and reducing supply. Mainstream service solutions identified include offering culturally competent services, effective intervention models, and research and needs assessment.
To explore needs, community organisations needed and key issues affecting the local Chinese community.
The project was an action research initiative funded by a Health Action Zone grant and by Leeds City Council. A team of ten Chinese community researchers were trained and undertook a survey of 110 adults April to June 2004. Focus groups and interviews were undertaken with representatives of Chinese organisations and members.
The report reviews the national context of the positioning of Chinese groups as ‘doing well’ among
BME groups and describes migration and settlement in Leeds. A detailed analysis of need among Chinese people in Leeds is provided relating to households, asylum seekers, elderly and single parent groups. The findings provide data on settlement; poor housing conditions; the need for advice; racism, crime and isolation; poor health; and support needs related to the elderly, single parents, and children in schools. The study was undertaken in response to a perceived lack of institutional attention and poor understanding of Chinese community needs.
Many urgent problems and issues remain hidden with little attention being paid by public services. There is a need to transform casework concerns of community organisations into a collective agenda for action and campaigning.
To understand mental well-being and distress of asylum seekers, refugees and minority ethnic groups in the Wakefield district, to explore uptake and barriers to mental health care and to make recommendations on service development.
The research was a qualitative study including semi-structured interviews with 12 health professionals; 10 asylum seekers and refugees; 9 minority ethnic group service users and local community members.
The report describes the approach and methodology and compares the experiences of mental health problems, access to services and needs of asylum seekers, refugees and minority ethnic groups. Service providers recognised a need to change and improve outcomes, and were aware of lack of awareness about mental health and lack of knowledge of available services among asylum seekers, refugees and ethnic minority communities. Barriers identified include language and communication. Strengths and weaknesses in addressing some of these issues are outlined, including the need for cultural awareness staff training. Some differences in mental health problems between the groups are identified. Staff attitudes, mistrust, lack of sensitivity or understanding of cultural needs are considered to contribute to a perception among asylum seekers, refugees and minority ethnic groups that services did not meet their needs.
There is evidence of increasing awareness of the particular mental health needs of asylum seekers, refugees and minority ethnic groups, but more needs to be done to develop better quality culturally sensitive mental health services.
Recommendations for service providers in mental health cover education and promotion of mental health; promotion of self-help groups; staff development and training; multidisciplinary and interagency work; involvement of local communities in planning and implementation; and monitoring of improvements.
The article provides an overview of the first regional integration strategy launched in December 2003 and discusses some issues related to refugee integration in Yorkshire and Humber. The article argues that there is a centuries-old tradition to welcome people to Yorkshire and Humber who are fleeing war and persecution, and describes how the new strategy aims to help refugees settle and contribute. The nature of arrival to the region changed with the introduction of dispersal in 1999. The percentage of asylum seekers receiving a positive decision in Yorkshire and Humber is higher than at a national level. Becoming a refugee is often seen as the end of a process, but change of status can bring complications and challenges. The strategy aims to help retain refugees in the region, as part of a recognition to retain people with high level skills.
Welcoming refugee integration is all the more important in the face of negative media portrayals. The numbers are low. If Yorkshire and Humber loses refugees who move to other areas the region misses out on an enormous potential resource. But the first reason for offering help to new settlers must be humanitarian.
To conduct a skills audit of refugees and asylum seekers in West Yorkshire, to map existing forms of job search support, and to look at how these might be strengthened.
A team with one manager and ten researchers conducted 500 interviews with asylum seekers and refugees with permission to work between mid-March and May 2003 to provide qualitative and quantitative data. The sample included 50 nationalities, 71% men; 75% were between the ages of 18 and 34.
The research identified organisations offering services to help the unemployed back into work including 14 refugee specific initiatives and provides data on respondents’ language skills, education, health and vocational skills or qualifications. The findings indicated issues of language difficulties; the workplace as a setting for gaining English skills; workplace language tuition; the benefits of mentor support; difficulties for employers to find out about services available to support refugees.
Recommendations are aimed at employers and employment support services, and identify a need for more coordination of services, sharing good practice, support for workplace mentors and language training linked to job or work experience.
To gauge broad levels of housing need among newly settled refugees; to identify sources of access to housing and related support services; and to identify the level of relevant community development initiatives.
The fieldwork, carried out between July and October 2002, involved collecting secondary information, interviews with various agencies, 44 interviews with refugees and asylum seekers, field notes from community research workers and focus groups discussions of the findings with 22 refugees and asylum seekers.
The report discusses issues relating to housing, in particular for those leaving
NASS support. The policy context of dispersal, the asylum application process and community support are outlined. Findings are presented on tensions and problems related to dispersal; public and private housing arrangements including an overview of statutory, voluntary and private sector roles; and issues surrounding the 28 day notice period for refugees leaving NASS support, integration and settlement are discussed alongside the role of refugee community organisations [RCOs].
A confusion of responsibilities, overlapping polices and crowded initiatives are yet to integrate the needs of refugees in planning and delivery mechanisms for mainstream services. There were also positive initiatives to promote settlement and integration.
A bolder commitment at national, regional and local levels is required to ensure the needs and aspirations of new communities, particularly regarding ‘joined up’ thinking; advice, information and training; safety and racial harassment; planning settlement and promotion of the role of RCOs.
The book compares dispersal policies in the Netherlands, Sweden and the UK. The UK section looks at national policy and provides some regional examples, including an overview of the Joseph Rowntree Charitable Trust report on dispersal in West Yorkshire.
The book provides a comparative analysis of European state policies relating to the dispersal of asylum seekers and refugees. It provides an account of how and why three EU member states introduced dispersal policies; describes the mechanisms employed to achieve dispersal; describes the intended and unintended outcomes that have arisen, critiques national policy and draws attention to good practice and challenges some of the key philosophies that underpin dispersal. The chapter on the UK provides an historical overview of immigration to Britain; sets the context of UK dispersal by discussing previous dispersal of ethnic minorities and refugees [including Bosnian dispersal to West Yorkshire and elsewhere]; and describes and assesses the current programme to disperse asylum seekers. Early dispersal and aspects of the 1999 Asylum and Immigration Act are described and discussed, and reactions to dispersal from key existing studies and refugee organisations are outlined.
Dispersal is less about the prohibitive expense of clustering or putting too much strain upon local services than it is about soothing the fears of white voters who want to feel that immigration, and who is allowed to live in 'their' cities, is under control.
The book provides a series of solutions to make the clustering of refugees and asylum seekers seem less threatening based around relegitimising asylum seeking; changing the tone of national debate; managing the media; promoting the positive value of asylum seekers; changing public perceptions through the educational system; community involvement, active engagement and sponsorship policies and easing local pressures.
The research aimed to gain an understanding of experiences and views about 'community' among young adults in Calderdale.
The research involved 11 workshops across Calderdale with adults aged 18-25 from diverse backgrounds between December 2002 and January 2003 that used mapping and interactive / visual methods. This creative material was analysed alongside tape recordings of workshop discussion.
The report presents findings on understandings of 'community', which communities individuals are involved with, factors affecting community interaction, barriers and obstacles to community interaction, and the relationship between community interaction and community engagement, including volunteering.
Participants understanding of 'community' was complex, multi-various and dynamic. Stereotyping and prejudice are the main barriers to community interaction. Many participants felt they were not actively involved in a variety of aspects of community life.
The handbook aims to provide ideas and inspiration to volunteer managers in refugee organisations and those outside the refugee sector wanting to draw in refugees and asylum seekers as volunteers.
The handbook includes information, advice and guidance on issues related to asylum and volunteering organised as an A to Z, including examples from volunteering organisations around the UK. Lists of useful organisations and useful reading, and examples of confidentiality forms, volunteer agreements and other policies are provided.
The aim of the research was to determine whether the training and employment support for forced migrants who are eligible to work is sufficient and appropriate.
The research combined a survey of 400 refugees and asylum seekers from the Somali regions, Iraq, Kosova, Sri Lanka and Turkey in five UK regions [including Yorkshire and Humber]; interviews in six UK cities [including Leeds and Sheffield], six focus groups with supporting agencies; and analysis of the Labour Force Survey [LFS].
The report addresses social aspects of life in the UK, pre-migration characteristics in terms of literacy and employment, English language and learning, employment and volunteering. Most respondents had been educated and many had previously held jobs in diverse areas of employment. The survey examined level of language skills on arrival and access to English classes once in the UK. Participation in training was very low despite a desire to participate in training. Levels of employment were very low, even when compared to LFS ethnic minority data. Diversity of employment was much more limited than pre-migration work experience and there was a lack of involvement in professional jobs. Employment was often in low skill jobs with poor terms and conditions and low pay. Methods of job seeking in Britain varied from those used in the country of origin and there were low levels of knowledge of statutory provision. Proficiency in English was linked to those likely to have been involved in volunteering.
Conclusions of the research relate to diversity of backgrounds and experiences among refugees; participation in education, training and the labour market; and the effects of language skills and information for access to employment.
The report offers detailed recommendations on employment, English language education and training, and for statutory, voluntary and community service provision. Areas for future research related to employment, training, language classes are outlined.
To consider whether initial failings of national dispersal policy were merely transitional.
The article is based on an ethnographic study of asylum seekers and residents in Hull, and draws on two pieces of research funded by Save the Children in 2000.
The article presents findings on the implementation of dispersal, practical support possible among social networks, issues of social tension related to dispersal and support systems. Dispersal is seen as unlikely to work in a relatively economically depressed and 'monocultural' place like Hull.
Declining rates of 'drift', whereby asylum seekers voluntarily leave dispersal sites, may indicate improvements. Significant changes are needed to improve quality of life for asylum seekers, including: the abolition of vouchers, improvement of clustering, and dealing with the quality of provision from private contractors.
To present a picture of the population of asylum seekers; to identify available data and shortcomings in collection and use; and to provide an overview of health service provision, gaps, needs and good practice.
The research was commissioned by the Northern & Yorkshire Public Health Observatory. It was carried out between October 2001 and January 2002 through attending meetings and conferences, 76 questionnaires with asylum and health service providers, and interviews with 17 asylum seekers in Hull and a focus group with refugee community representatives in the North East.
The report provides an overview of asylum seekers in Yorkshire, Humberside and the North East in 2001. Asylum seekers are socially excluded and vulnerable to poor health. Many agencies are committed to providing services but coordination is variable. There is a need for better data gathering and dissemination. Mental health is a major concern. Language and communication issues are key.
Recommendations are directed at the Department of health, the National Asylum Support Service, regional coordination and to those supporting the community sector. The report recommends action to develop national policy on health issues; improved information systems; translated health care information at a national level; commitment at regional level across agencies, support for community sector development and mechanisms of dissemination of good practice.
The research project aimed to give a voice to young people who have come to England, separated from their parents or carers, to seek asylum. The study in Yorkshire and Humberside contributed to the national 'Cold Comfort' report.
Semi-structured interviews were carried out with 18 young people [16 male and 2 female] from six different nationality groups. Participant observation was conducted visiting 25 young people in their places of residence, social and educational settings. 16 professionals were consulted and some of these were interviewed.
The report provides an overview of young asylum seekers and refugees in the UK and local policy and practice. Findings are presented on the impact of forma care provision on the experiences of young separated refugees, including: support from adults, accommodation, education, healthcare, leisure, immigration and legal support; and on the impact of informal care provision, including, families, social networks, racism and integration.
The report concludes that there is a need for local authorities to develop dedicated services, differences in the care received by those whose care is 'contracted out' to private providers, and problems for young people placed outside of the authority that has care for them.
A number of recommendations are provided to improve policy and practice around young separated refugees, including taking social networks into account placing a young person, improvements to advice and information, and tailoring of services.
The research aimed to explore if the dispersal of refugees and / or asylum seekers to relatively 'mono-cultural' communities, such as those in Humberside, can work.
The research, undertaken between August and September 2000 in Hull, analysed secondary sources and undertook 11 semi-structured interviews with statutory, private and voluntary sector representatives, six interviews with refugees and asylum seekers, one focus group with 'local' people and five with refugees and asylum seekers.
The report considers refugee and asylum seekers' attitudes about measures within the Immigration and Asylum Act ; experiences of and responses to the communities refugees and asylum seekers make and inhabit; and whether dispersal to mono-cultural communities can work. The report argues that dispersal to Humberside is unlikely to work due to lack of employment opportunities; lack of existing ethnic and national social networks; lack of appropriate legal support with asylum applications; and lack of established institutionalised structures of support tailored to the needs of refugees and asylum seekers.
The resettlement of refugees and asylum seekers to contexts such as Humberside is unlikely to work for a number of reasons.
To address the question of why asylum seekers make their applications in particular countries rather than others.
The research is based on interviews with 10 Somali and 12 Bosnian respondents in Sheffield.
The article examines existing approaches to understanding migration statistics and movement among migrants and asylum seekers. It is argued that asylum migration is more complex than suggested by aggregated statistics. Key features of the movements of Bosnian and Somali 'choice' and movement are outlined. There is commonly a two stage movement: first to a neighbouring haven, and then onto a more permanent place of settlement. Few of the respondents had any real choice in where they ended up. Family circumstances, cultural connections, and the actions of a variety of institutions produced scenarios in which there was generally no alternative to the actual destination arrived at.
A mix of individual level and institutional explanations is needed to understand patterns of asylum destinations.
The study aimed to give a voice to young people under the age 18 who have come to England, separated from their parents or usual carers, to seek asylum.
The study was part of a three year project funded by the Diana, Princess of Wales Memorial Fund. Between July 2000 and February 2001 researchers talked to 125 young separated asylum seekers and refugees across England [including Yorkshire and Humberside]. Interviews were also conducted with 125 professionals and adults who work with young separated refugees.
The report addresses the policy context, arrival and age determination, assessment, accommodation, support from social workers, financial support, transition at 18 years, education, social networks, immigration issues, and health. A significant number of interviewees had chaotic and disturbing experiences on arrival and received little or no support. Level of care and type of support depends more on which social services department they arrive at rather than on their individual needs. Contracting out to private companies leaves young people without adequate support. Access to education opportunities varies from area to area. Transition at 18 can lead to loss of friends and support. Many had mental health problems.
Despite their resilience and apparent maturity, young separated refugees deserve and require improvements in the standard of care and the protection they receive.
Recommendations are for central government - removing the reservation on the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child 1989 to asylum seeking and other non citizen children, increasing grants to local authorities for support, improving asylum application procedures, not dispersing young people; and for local authorities - ensuring needs-led assessments, appropriate accommodation, monitoring all placements, establish inter-agency groups, education and health providers to ensure services appropriate to needs.
To provide an overview of services and support asylum seekers dispersed to West Yorkshire to help develop new initiatives, inform planners, strengthen networks and to contribute to change in inefficient or inequitable components of dispersal.
Data was gathered through 65 interviews with professionals and community representatives working with asylum seekers, attendance at meetings and a conference, interviews with 27 asylum seekers, and from secondary sources.
The report reviews services in West Yorkshire against Audit Commission good practice guidelines on implementing dispersal. Findings are presented on how dispersal works [arrival, process, arranging dispersal], on asylum statistics, on organisations and services in West Yorkshire, on types of service provision and on asylum seeker responses to different aspects of the dispersal process. The report discusses problems in communication with
NASS, experiences of racial harassment, differences between local authority and private sector housing, English language provision, and interpreting.
Dispersal can be an effective means of providing services and support to asylum seekers. However, gaps and shortcomings in service provision include inadequate resourcing for public services, risk of poor legal representation, the voucher system, and quality of housing.
Recommendations on improving legal representation, abolishing the voucher system and consultation with local agencies are aimed at the Home Office and NASS. Other recommendations on the role of reception centres, health services, supporting community organisations, and improving English language provision are aimed at local statutory and voluntary sector bodies.
The report outlines the issues affecting the primary healthcare of asylum seekers in Leeds and proposes recommendations for a future asylum seeker health service.
Semi-structured interviews were conducted with 4 asylum seekers, 5 housing support and hostel workers, and 19 primary healthcare providers.
The report suggests that 28% of asylum seekers in Leeds were not registered with a general practitioner, which may be linked to the language barrier or extra time needed. Missed or late appointments negatively influenced the relationship of asylum seekers with practices. The idea of hand-held medical records that asylum seekers would keep with them was popular. Language was the most important factor identified, creating frustration and increasing appointment times. Key areas of concern in primary care were mental health and sexual health, insufficient knowledge of asylum seeker issues, funding for asylum seeker services, and the need for good communication between agencies.
The development of effective asylum seeker health services requires prioritising specialist language services, linking to other support groups and reducing the overall time it takes to see asylum seekers.
Aimed at primary healthcare providers, the recommendations include screening of new arrivals and registration at local practices to provide continued care.
The article discusses the management of the reception of Bosnian quota refugees in relation to durable solutions. The Bosnian programme is an example of an ad hoc reaction to specific circumstances, in which Britain initially played only a limited role. The article describes the organizational structure of the dispersal of Bosnian quota refugees; the policy objectives, length and funding; how the policy was implemented through reception centres; the location, size, housing issues and 'critical mass' of clusters [West Yorkshire was one of six]; secondary migration; satisfaction; and community development initiatives to support refugees.
The Bosnian programme had some similarities with previous policies but clearly departed from established practice by creating 'clustered' dispersal. Ideas of resettlement were broadened beyond provision of housing and greater emphasis placed on mid and long-term resettlement support. This new approach had strengths and failings, notably a lack of planning or preparation since earlier attempts at dispersing quota refugees.
The article recommended the need for greater coordination of dispersal programmes and for one agency to be given the long term role of prime contractor to implement and oversee arrivals and to plan for future quotas.
The article suggests that destitution is an intentional outcome of UK asylum support policies and that the lack of means for meeting basic needs creates precarious lives characterised by dependence and lack of choice.
Based on a survey of destitute clients at 5 agencies; interviews with 8 destitute asylum seekers; 23 interviews, two focus groups and a questionnaire with statutory and voluntary agencies and participant observation at drop-ins providing support.
The policy causes of destitution are multiple with various roots both in the asylum determination process and in the asylum support system. Three intentions of destitution in the asylum system are identified: the separation of an even ‘more undeserving’ group within the asylum system [people whose asylum cases are rejected]; developing controls that attempt to incentivise return to country of origin; and as a tool of deterrence to discourage future arrivals, especially those deemed to be making fraudulent use of the asylum system to gain entry for economic reasons. The assertion that withdrawal of welfare support operates as a coercive tool has had far reaching effects for individuals subject to the asylum system and voluntary sector agencies that seek to support them. Section 4 support is available to some refused asylum seekers but people are often destitute in the period between asylum support being removed and applying for
Section 4; some who apply are refused; and take up is low due to a fear of return to country of origin. Dependency on others for basic needs means experiences of various elements of destitution change over time in relation to information, opportunities and social relationships. While some refused asylum seekers benefit from vital support from fellow migrants, their undocumented status places them in vulnerable position. There is an expectation that voluntary, charity and church bodies will provide, but attempting to meet the urgent, basic needs of destitute clients diverts their resources from social, integration-focused activities.
Thousands of refused asylum seekers have been left for extended periods, often for years, in a seemingly intractable situation of forced destitution that manifests multiple serious health and social problems and leaves voluntary agencies and charitable support overstretched. There is no evidence that destitution achieves its aims of encouraging return, and it may even make return less likely as refused asylum seekers are forced to focus on daily survival. Granting the right to work would allow people to support themselves, but is a highly sensitive political issue.