The Home Office is once again under scrutiny for the use of sites such as military barracks to accommodate asylum seekers and now an inquiry is to be carried out into the subject.
MPs and peers from the All Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) on immigration detention agreed to proceed with the inquiry with the cross-party group due to publish its initial findings before the summer recess.
A Home Office spokesperson said that asylum seekers at Napier have the same access to health services as other members of the community and denied that a curfew has operated at the barracks. The news comes as at least 10 new legal challenges have been launched by asylum seekers transferred to Napier over the last few days.
In a statement to The Guardian, a Home Office spokesperson said, “While pressure on the asylum system remains we will continue to make use of Napier barracks. Asylum seekers are staying in safe, suitable, Covid-compliant conditions, where they receive three nutritious meals a day.
“Napier has previously housed army personnel – it is wrong to say they are not adequate for asylum seekers, and we have made a significant number of improvements to the site following feedback from residents and inspectors. Our new plan for immigration will reform the broken asylum system, allowing us to welcome people through safe and legal routes, while preventing abuse of the system and the criminality associated with it.”