To The Leader, Coventry City Council Cllr John Mutton

The Council House Earl Street Coventry CV1 5RR

March 12 2013

Via e mail and First Class Post Dear Sir We write on behalf of XXXXXXXXXXX, currently residing in a G4S managed property in Coventry. XXXXXXXXXX has been in touch via Support Solutions, the charity. Kazuri is a social enterprise which works with vulnerable women, women heading homeless families and women on licence in the community. She writes: “We are living in a property in coventry being run by G4s, we are family of 4....we have been only given two wardrobes...we asked for more 5 months ago, and whenever we contact our casworker...he has many excuses... We had so far got rid of 20 mices in our house....my 2 young children are so scared....we asked him for treatment of mice...he came 1 day and gave us 1 glue trap... We have so far spent more thn 20 pounds on this issue...bt still everyday we find more. Our toilet light is broken for last 1 week..he cant come, as he says its not an emergency..... “ We are appalled by the situation in which XXXXXXXXXX finds herself and her children. The children will already be suffering from extreme trauma, from the little we know about XXXXXXXXXXXX case and to further subject them to living in a vermin infested house is not acceptable. This pours shame on British society in a damning indictment of how we look after our weakest and most vulnerable. We understand that XXXXXXXXXXX has sought help and support from G4S but the caseworker is always busy, which means he has an extraordinary caseload or is not doing his job. Either way, G4S have won a substantial contract to safely house asylum seekers and this treatment falls short not only of their contractual requirements but also of the family’s basic human right to live in decent accommodation under The Housing Act and Human Rights legislation. G4S was one of three firms awarded six contracts worth a total of £620m over seven years by UKBA for housing asylum seekers undercutting several experienced public and voluntary sector consortia. They should not be given contracts if they cannot deliver them. Their only specialism appears to be terrorising, torturing and inflicting more trauma to already traumatised and vulnerable women. We urge you to look into this matter urgently and without delay and to please do whatever needs to be done to force repairs by the contractor G4S, which is extracting profitable contracts from the government funded by the taxpayer under frankly fraudulent bids, and not providing the services for which they are commissioned. We are looking into whether G4S are fit to handle this lucrative contract, to provide asylum seekers with decent accommodation, with the UK Border Authority and whether it can be judicially reviewed as this is not the only example of poor accommodation being
Four Feather Mews | 89 Fieldgate Street | London E1 1DH Tel 020 7 377 5791 | e info@kazuri.org.uk

forced upon vulnerable families. Whilst we accept that the Local Authority did not have anything to do with the contract with G4S, we would urge you to kindly bring a member’s inquiry as to why a constituent family is being forced to live in these circumstances. I have written to our local MP, Rushanara Ali and also to the Managing Director of G4S and I await the outcome of our complaint. On their own website G4S state : “Societies cannot thrive and prosper if people are not safe and secure.” We do not consider putting a family into accommodation which does need the minimum standards of decent homes providing safety or security . They fall short by their own standards. Please contact me so I can provide you with the details of this family in distress. Thank you for your assistance Yours sincerely Joe Crane Head of Housing Policy

CC Right Honourable Theresa May, Home Secretary

Rushanara Ali, MP for Bow and Bethnall Green Stephen Small, Managing Director of G4S Immigration and Borders Tony Smith CBE, Interim Director General, UK Border Force

Four Feather Mews | 89 Fieldgate Street | London E1 1DH Tel 020 7 377 5791 | e info@kazuri.org.uk