Authorities now house migrants in secondary schools

Authorities now house migrants in secondary schools

Western Europe is no longer able to cope with the migratory pressure. In addition to makeshift housing in tents and containers, authorities are now converting educational institutions into migrant shelters.

WORLD SEPTEMBER 9. 2023 17:32

A gym hall, divided into 24 small compartments of three by three metres, separated by plastic sheeting. The German town of Telgte in Münsterland has placed 45 people here. The municipality had no choice, as there was nowhere else to house the immigrants. The 110 apartments that the small town had rented for the refugees were full. Wolfgang Pieper, the mayor of the town of 20 thousand residents, called the situation unacceptable.

This is unacceptable for the people, unacceptable for the clubs and schools that have to do without their sports facilities. But with no other capacity left, it was the only solution we could choose in the short term

the Green party politician told German public media.

Municipalities across Germany are complaining that they have to take in significantly more refugees than the housing capacities they have. There is not only a shortage of housing, but also of nursery and school places, money and staff, says Gerd Landsberg, head of the Association of German Cities and Municipalities.

North Rhine-Westphalia has taken in more refugees this summer than throughout last year.

The number of first-time asylum applications has surged steeply across the country, with 204,461 first-time asylum applications filed between January and August, according to data from the Federal Office for Migration and Asylum. This is around 77 per cent more than in the same period last year. In addition, there are also refugees from Ukraine who are not included in the figures.

Apart from the financial implications, local authorities are also concerned about the consequences in terms of social interaction.

„Tensions will arise if a German family can’t find housing, but the town of Telgte is hosting refugees in flats,” says Mayor Pieper, noting that the increase in tension is palpable as the town seeks new venues to house refugees, because people have become less tolerant. In order to alleviate the situation, at least in the medium term, the town of Telgte is now building container housing in various locations. But this costs a lot of money, exceeding the funds that actually exist.



crisis, germany, migrants