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Wed, 06 Jul 22 11:59

Comment on Homes for Ukraine scheme

ADCS President Steve Crocker said:

“It has been devastating to see Ukrainian families fleeing their homes in search of safety and protection, leaving everything they know behind. Local authorities want to play our part in the response to this unfolding humanitarian crisis and are already welcoming many Ukrainian families and helping them to settle into their new communities and access local services, including GPs, childcare and school places for children. Some children will need additional support to overcome the trauma and loss they’ve experienced, such as access to child and adolescent mental health services, it’s vital that local and specialist services can meet any additional demand placed on them and we will need government’s support with this.

“The schemes currently in place to welcome Ukrainian refugees into the UK; the Ukraine Family Scheme and the Homes for Ukraine Schemes, were not designed with unaccompanied children in mind and ADCS is involved in ongoing discussions with the Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities, the Home Office, the LGA and others, about the legal status of such children in this emergency situation. The initial guidance from government outlining the role of councils in supporting refugees arriving from Ukraine is helpful but more information is needed, and quickly. We continue to raise the need for any current and future arrangements for Ukrainian refugees to be child-focused and for local authorities to get necessary information, including about the age of arrivals, as soon as possible so that we can plan accordingly, and so children’s needs can be met in the short and long term.”

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