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BREAKING: Asylum Seeker Dies On Bibby Stockholm

Kallum Gethins

ByKallum Gethins

Dec 12, 2023
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“They have wilfully ignored the trauma they are inflicting on people who are sent to the Bibby Stockholm, and the hundreds being accommodated in former military barracks.

“They are being separated from the rest of society and we have witnessed a serious deterioration of people’s mental health. We have regularly been reporting suicidal intentions amongst residents and no action is taken.”

It comes as MPs prepare to debate another anti-immigration policy, the plan to send asylum seekers – some who may have been housed on the barge – thousands of miles away to Rwanda.

The plan had been ruled unlawful by the Supreme Court, which said Rwanda was not a safe country, but Rishi Sunak announced emergency legislation which bypasses some human rights laws in order to get the policy off the ground.

The Bibby Stockholm barge has been blighted with problems from the moment in docked at Portland, with a series of concerning health and safety issues.

Before anyone was moved to the repurposed accommodation barge, the Fire Brigade Union raised “serious fire and operational safety concerns” about the potential for overcrowding on the boat where the Home Office hopes to eventually house up to 500 asylum seekers.

There has also been intense local opposition to asylum seekers being housed on the boat, with numerous protests taking place both before people were moved their, and during their stay.

The union said : “In the view of the FBU, far-right opposition to asylum-seekers, reported in the news, gives rise to a real risk of arson attacks or use of hazardous materials against the barge.”

And Legionella bacteria was found in water on the boat after the first 39 asylum seekers were moved there, resulting in them all being removed.

People were eventually returned to the boat but the site has recently faced protests and counter protests.

Local residents of Weymouth and Portland from the ‘No To The Barge’ campaign group gathered to voice their continuing concerns, saying they are “fed up, frustrated and angry”, in November.

They were met by counter protesters, who also did not believe people should be housed on the barge but were urging the government to offer more support.

In response to both protests, a spokesperson for the Home Office said: “This is part of the government’s pledge to reduce the use of expensive hotels and bring forward alternative accommodation options which provide a more cost-effective, sustainable and manageable system for the UK taxpayer and local communities.”

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