Mayor of Newham Rokhsana Fiaz OBE co-signs letter condemning the treatment of asylum seekers living in hotels across the Capital and the UK

Asylum seeker socials 1

Twenty-two London councils have written to Suella Braverman to condemn the treatment of asylum seekers living in hotels across the Capital and the UK.

Following the removal of over 100 people from a hotel in Greenwich to Dunstable, Bedfordshire (more than 50 miles away), the letter urges the Government to take immediate action to prevent further suffering.  

It sets out four key areas of improvement of the treatment of asylum seekers in hotels, including stopping the removal of people at only hours’ notice, improved communication and transparency with local authorities, ensuring basic needs are met including food and healthcare provision, and finding a permanent housing solution for people stuck in hotels. 

The letter, led by the Royal Borough of Greenwich, has been co-signed by the London Boroughs of Barking and Dagenham and Hammersmith and Fulham, and Barnet, Brent, Camden, Ealing, Enfield, Hackney, Haringey, Hounslow, Islington, Lambeth, Lewisham, Newham, Redbridge, Southwark, Tower Hamlets, Waltham Forest, Wandsworth and Westminster City Councils. 

Local authorities have no control over the management or running of hotels housing asylum seekers – this is under the complete jurisdiction of the Home Office and its contractors.  

The Royal Borough of Greenwich, like other signatories to this letter, has written to the Home Office on numerous occasions to raise significant issues over the treatment and welfare of asylum seekers, but has received minimal response. 

List of signees (28 total): 

Cllr Anthony Okereke, Leader of the Royal Borough of Greenwich 

Councillor Denise Scott-McDonald, Cabinet Member for Health and Adult Services, Royal Borough of Greenwich 

Cllr Darren Rodwell, Leader of the London Borough of Barking and Dagenham 

Cllr Barry Rawlings, Leader of Barnet Council 

Cllr Muhammed Butt, Leader of Brent Council 

Cllr Nadia Shah, Cabinet Member for Voluntary Sector, Equalities and Cohesion, Camden Council 

Cllr Peter Mason, Leader of Ealing Council 

Cllr Nesil Caliskan, Leader of Enfield Council, 

Phillip Glanville, Mayor of Hackney 

Cllr Carole Williams, Cabinet Member for Employment, Skills and HR, Hackney Council 

Cllr Stephen Cowan, Leader of the London Borough of Hammersmith and Fulham      

Cllr Ben Coleman, Deputy Leader of the London Borough of Hammersmith and Fulham 

Cllr Peray Ahmet, Leader of Haringey Council 

Cllr Lucia das Neves, Cabinet Member for Health, Social Care and Well-being, Haringey Council 

Cllr Shantanu Rajawat, Leader of Hounslow Council 

Cllr Kaya Comer-Schwartz, Leader of Islington Council 

Cllr Marcia Cameron, Cabinet Member for Healthier Communities (Job share), London Borough of Lambeth 

Cllr Jim Dickson, Cabinet Member for Healthier Communities (Job share), London Borough of Lambeth 

Damien Egan, Mayor of Lewisham 

Cllr Juliet Campbell, Cabinet Member for Communities, Refugees and Wellbeing, Lewisham Council 

Cllr Ross Garrod, Leader of Merton Council 

Mayor Rokhsana Fiaz OBE, Newham Council 

Cllr Jas Athwal, Leader of Redbridge Council 

Cllr Jasmine Ali, Deputy Leader and Cabinet Member for Children, Young People, Education and Refugees, Southwark Council 

Lutfur Rahman, Executive Mayor of Tower Hamlets 

Cllr Grace Williams, Leader of Waltham Forest Council 

Cllr Simon Hogg, Leader of Wandsworth Council 

Cllr Adam Hug, Leader of Westminster Council 

The letter can be read here (PDF)

Published: 13 Mar 2023