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Ukrainian refugees are getting off the ship in Edinburgh
By Seaandcoast | 20/05/2023
The contract for the ship was extended in December, but the Scottish government has stated that the agreement will expire on July 11. There is a possibility that some of the passengers won't stay in Edinburgh and instead travel to another part of Scotland. 1,200 Ukrainian migrants were also housed aboard a cruise store that was docked in Glasgow, but that agreement ended in March.
In July, those who don't have a place to move into are probably going to be temporarily placed in hotels, with the Scottish government footing the expense. Prior to now, the British Red Cross had issued a cautionary statement against keeping migrants in "isolated" and "windowless" cabins on cruise ships. The charity claimed that the plan left many people "still living in limbo".
According to a report given to the housing committee of the City of Edinburgh Council on Tuesday, there is "a concern that sufficient accommodation will not be available" in the city's capital when the cruise ship arrangement expires. However, it was noted that many of the people who have been living on board "have expressed a desire to remain in the city or nearby".
Children should stay in the school they were assigned to when they arrived, said Paul Lawrence, executive director of place for the council, "so they are not moved around the city." At the meeting, it was also announced that a funding request for £1.72 million would be made to the Scottish government in order to prepare up to 100 vacant council-owned homes for refugees arriving by ship.
By the end of this month, the first 20 renovated homes are expected to be ready, and work is ongoing to bring the remaining homes up to par. The report did note that 30 need "more extensive work" and won't be given priority in the near to medium term.
"Alternative preparations are being prepared," it continued, "to ensure that acceptable housing is accessible to Ukrainian displaced individuals in the short term, as it will not be possible to have all of the accommodation specified in this report available for disembarkation.The Scottish government will be responsible for covering the cost of this lodging, which is most likely to consist of hotels.