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Refugee Integration Services

Volume 450: debated on Monday 23 October 2006

The Home Office published a consultation document on 23 October to seek views on its proposals for an overhaul of the way in which Government-funded refugee integration services are delivered. The proposals centre on the establishment of a core set of services to be made available to refugees across England (it will be for the devolved administrations to decide on the case for analogous changes for Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland). The proposals move considerably beyond those set out in the current national integration strategy “Integration Matters”; and the Government will issue a revised policy statement on the future of refugee integration services as an outcome of the consultation process. The Government have invited comments on its proposals by Christmas, and a copy of the consultation paper has been placed in the Libraries.

Along with the changes in its refugee integration strategy, the Government will also reform the arrangements for regular consultation on matters affecting refugees as an integral part of its wider approach to stakeholder management in the Immigration and Nationality Directorate. The National Refugee Integration Forum will therefore be wound up, although arrangements will be made to continue project work undertaken under its auspices. The Government wishes to place on record its gratitude to those who have served on the Forum since its inception in 2000.