Investigating the use of temporary accommodation for housing asylum seekers and refugees during the COVID-19 outbreak

  This project will explore the impact of the Covid-19 outbreak on asylum seekers and refugees living in the UK, one of the most marginalised and most at-risk groups during the current pandemic. The project will focus on those individuals placed in temporary accommodations such as hostels and hotels, using Glasgow as a case study. It will be the first investigation of housing and the organisation of asylum seekers in light of the Covid-19 crisis. Moves by private sector firms to relocate asylum seekers into ‘safe environments’ have been widely criticised by organisations and stakeholders, who have reported the fear and distress that this move has caused for asylum seekers. The moves have resulted in difficulties to maintain social distancing in the new shared and crowded spaces and increasing the risks of exposure to Covid-19. In addition, this re-housing has also made it difficult for local charities and organisations to provide support and assistance to the affected individuals, who are moved often at short notice during challenging times. The research will examine what the situation is currently on the ground, how the crisis has accentuated the risk experienced by those seeking asylum and develop responses with migrant communities to create a genuinely ‘safer environment’ for asylum seekers. Adopting a digital ethnographic method - co-designed and co-produced with grassroots migrant organisations, the research will offer a detailed and rich account of the everyday life and experiences of asylum seekers and refugees during Covid-19 outbreak.

  • Start Date:

    20 November 2020

  • End Date:

    19 November 2021

  • Activity Type:

    Externally Funded Research

  • Funder:

    Economic and Social Research Council

  • Value:

    £53468

Project Team