Migrant workers update
Flintshire County Council’s Chief Executive Colin Everett said: The Council is
continuing to work with the migrant workers to help them plan for the future,
either in the local area, elsewhere in the UK or their repatriation.
Just under 50 of the migrant workers who stayed for one night at an emergency
reception centre at Holywell Leisure Centre have now all moved to short term
temporary accommodation in the local area. The Leisure Centre is now open as
normal. About 40 workers who have stayed for two nights at a second
emergency reception centre in the region will be moving to short term
temporary accommodation today. All have continued with their daily work
since they moved from the property in Sealand on Sunday.
None of the temporary rehousing options being offered to those who wish to
remain locally involve allocating council and other social housing properties
for which there are waiting lists.
Prohibition orders have been served on the premises in Sealand and
prosecution action against the owners is under consideration.
The purpose of the operation on Sunday 22 March, the first of its kind in
Flintshire, was to protect the welfare of a large and growing number of migrant
workers who were inappropriately housed in unsafe and illegal premises in the
It was a multi agency operation involving the Council, Police, Fire, Health,
Government departments and British Red Cross who provided humanitarian
assistance as required.
The operation could have taken one of several courses depending on the
situation found on site. Approximately 100 migrant workers were found to be
housed in grossly unsuitable and unsafe premises and the partner agencies had
no option but to immediately close the premises with emergency prohibition
orders and transport the occupants to a reception centre.
Given the large number of people involved the partner agencies had to open a
second emergency reception centre in addition to the main reception centre
which had already been planned as a contingency.
The migrant workers were cooperative and many have expressed their relief that
they are now able to access welfare advice and support having lived in such
The main reception centre was a specialist one located in the region. The
second reception centre was in Holywell Leisure Centre which is listed in our
emergency plans to be used as a reception centre in an emergency and was able
to be made available at short notice.
All of the migrant workers involved are European nationals with a right of free
movement. None of them are illegal immigrants. Neither is there any
criminality on their behalf. They are all people who came to the UK to find