Berlin's housing shortage could force refugees to sleep in temporary reception facilities | Photo: Steffi Loos/AP/Picture-alliance
Berlin's housing shortage could force refugees to sleep in temporary reception facilities | Photo: Steffi Loos/AP/Picture-alliance

Berlin is desperately seeking accommodation for newly arriving refugees. A Berlin senator has said a cut back on the quality of accommodation can no longer be ruled out.

The number of available housing for newly arriving refugees is melting "like ice in the sun," Berlin Senator for Integration, Labour and Social Affairs Katja Kipping announced on Tuesday (July 5) following a senate meeting in the German capital.

Berlin's need for new accommodation for migrants has risen steadily in recent years, according to Kipping.

Berlin currently has less than 200 spots available across some 75 shared accommodations, she said, adding that there were on average only two to three vacant places per assigned community accommodation available.

German newspaper the Tagesspiegel reported on Tuesday that of 25,915 places, only 854 were still available.

Kipping, a member of the Left party, said the shortage is especially problematic when larger families arrive in Germany, who need to be accommodated in the same facilty. She added that cutting back on the quality of accommodation can no longer be ruled out.

Housing shortage could force migrants into temporary facilities 

In May, around 1,080 asylum seekers arrived in Berlin. An additional 200 people arrived via Germany's government scheme for Afghanistan and also had to be accommodated, the politician said.

The number of refugees arriving from Ukraine, meanwhile, stands at 450 to 750 per month, meaning some 1,700 to 2,000 housing places would have to be made available each month, Kipping said.

Kipping also said that many Berlin locals who had offered to take in Ukrainians in their private homes were now starting to refrain from their offers. That's why now, many months later, additional refugees were heading to shared accommodations.

The housing shortage might force Ukrainian refugees to sleep in temporary reception facilities, she said, adding this could compromise food provisions.

With EPD

 

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