Protesters fight to protect asylum-seekers’ housing

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CAMPAIGNERS turned out in support of asylum seekers unhappy about plans by the Home Office to transfer responsibility for their housing from councils to private security firms.

Members of South Yorkshire Migration and Asylum Action Group (SYMAAG) gathered with placards outside Sheffield Town Hall before marching to the UK Border Agency offices at Millsands, Riverside.

Campaigners fear up to 500 families in Sheffield, Barnsley and Rotherham could be moved from their current homes and placed where contractors decide.

A SYMAAG spokesman said: “If councils lose the housing contracts it will mean asylum seekers being dispersed to private landlords or hostels often miles away from children’s schools or family doctors. Dozens of council jobs will go with the contracts.”