Author: CONRAD LANDIN
SEVEN in 10 refugee homes provided by outsourcing giant Serco in Glasgow failed basic standards tests last year, according to inspection reports.
Just 118 of 426 homes inspected by the Home Office between December 1 2017 and November 20 2018 were deemed compliant with government standards, the Glasgow Evening Times reported.
Asylum Seeker Housing Project manager Sheila Arthur told the Evening Times: “We have live cases ongoing of service users with toddlers who are without hot water. Others have waited months for washing machines for beds to be supplied.
“Looking at the service, if this was a social housing provider they would have been jumped on by regulators from a great height and ‘special measures’ put in place.
“It would appear that Serco are Teflon-coated and must now be held to account.”
Serco housed almost 4,000 asylum-seekers in Glasgow last year.
Last summer the outsourcing giant proposed immediate lock changes for people rejected for asylum.
The plan was dropped after uproar and plans for a direct action campaign to resist evictions.
Last week Serco lost the government contract, but new provider Mears Group will not take over until September.
Serco’s Jenni Halliday said: “The Serco team in Glasgow treats the asylum-seekers in our care with dignity and respect and provide accommodation that not only meets the required standards, but is some of the most heavily inspected in the country.
“It is this inspection regime, by our own teams and the Home Office, that ensure the properties meet the required standards and that any defects are rectified.
“As the Home Office has made clear, all the defects identified in these inspections were rectified by Serco within the contractual timescales.”