Patrick Duce, Homeless Link
Working with refugees: Guidance for homelessness services

Once an asylum seeker has been awarded refugee status they have the same entitlements to welfare benefits as UK nationals. However, the transition from asylum seeker to refugee can be
problematic and there is a high risk of homelessness or destitution for this client group. Agencies supporting refugees report delays in accessing welfare benefits and housing support, and a lack of
available information about where to go for help, which may result in homelessness. For refugees, the transition between support systems is a critical point and one for which homelessness agencies
can play a vital role in ensuring that refugees and asylum seekers do not fall between the cracks.

This guidance is for services working with adult refugees without dependents who are homeless but do not meet the ‘priority need’ test for local authority housing, and for those services supporting
asylum seekers who are at risk of becoming homeless after a positive decision. It provides a brief overview of common issues and key steps to reduce the risk of homelessness. The resources section at the end of this guidance contains links to specialist advice and other organisations working in this area.