HUNDREDS of asylum seekers are being supported in Barnsley with more than 20 currently waiting to be deported, new figures have revealed.

Coun Will Fielding, who represents the Dodworth ward, asked the council for information on the number of asylum seekers who are currently living in Barnsley.

Coun Caroline Makinson said there are currently no Home Office sites in use across the borough.

However in nearby Manvers, which falls under the wing of MP for Wentworth and Dearne John Healey, the Holiday Inn is being used for asylum seekers with no consultation.

An exclusive contract is now in place with the Home Office until October, angering locals and Mr Healey.

Coun Makinson said: “There are no Home Office-designated hostels, hotels or refugee sites in the Barnsley borough.

“As of November 17, there were 316 asylum seekers supported under section 95 and section four in dispersed accommodation managed by Mears.

“Section 95 means they have a leave to remain and section four means they are awaiting deportation.

“Under this, there are currently 292 under section 95 and 24 under section four.

“The health screening for asylum seekers takes place before dispersal.

“This includes testing for TB and vaccinations are also given at this point with an assessment for medical need also done too.

“Health screening is done in the initial holding centre upon arrival.

“The council has weekly meetings with the Home Office regarding asylum and Migration Yorkshire has a designated officer for asylum seekers.

“The Home Office would also offer on-site security at any hotels or hostels.

“The council has weekly meetings with Mears to discuss any management issues.

“They provide a monthly update on accommodation and request background information to make sure the accommodation is suitable.

“Mears have support workers for each asylum seeker.

“I received an email from Migration Yorkshire to say there is a film and other resources being sent out.”

Coun Fielding said he was pleased with the figures, but urged others not to use their platforms to ‘demonise’ the asylum seekers.

“It’s good to have this information publicly especially given there was a terror attack on a migrant processing centre just in October,” he said.

“Those who use elected platforms to demonise asylum seekers make their lives harder.”