REFUGEES in Ealing are facing homelessness due to changes in Home Office policy, according to Ealing and Acton Support Enterprise (EASE).

EASE, which works with people staying in hotels waiting to hear about their asylum claim, highlights their anxieties in a short film released on Thursday.

“The only thing going through my mind was the idea of sleeping outside in this weather in my 50s,” said Mohammad, who was given one week’s notice of his eviction.

The period to find alternative housing after being given notice to quit Home Office accommodation was shortened from a minimum of 28 days to just seven in August.

EASE is offering food, English classes and baby essentials to refugees, alongside weekly drop-in sessions.

English language teacher Alison is hosting a refugee in her home and feels the policy change has created a vicious cycle.

“Anywhere they [refugees] look at privately, they need six months’ employment history. Anywhere they look to work, they want a permanent address. If they then become street homeless, it’s so difficult to recover from that.”

The Red Cross estimates it takes 35 days for refugees to receive Universal Credit and 56 for local authorities to help them secure accommodation.

With this in mind, EASE and the Diocese of London are urging the Government to immediately reinstate the 28-day transition period and, longer term, to extend it to 56 days.

At a community level, those with a spare room to offer can get in touch with Refugees At Home and the Housing Justice Hosting Project.