Since the beginning of the crisis more and more migrants are arriving in London and the UK. When people come here, they often find their first steps difficult. We want everyone to feel welcome and help them as much as possible. That’s why we have published a new pamphlet, “London – a migrant’s guide”. It is a practical introduction to life in London and the UK.
The following areas are covered in the guide:
- Using public transport in London as well as trains and coaches in the UK;
- Where to access the internet and how to get a cheap mobile phone;
- Libraries and colleges where you may get free English language classes;
- Where to buy cheap food and other stuff and where to get it for free;
- How to open a bank account;
- Accessing health services, regularly and in emergency, including the access to contraception and abortion;
- Housing including practical issues such as rent and conditions you may expect, your rights as a tenant, and a few words on homelessness and squatting;
- Work including, pay, taxes, your rights at work, and issues you may encounter such as health and safety, bullying and harassment, zero hours contracts and false self employment, etc.
- A very basic breakdown of welfare benefits available in the UK;
- A few words on the police and the law, including when and where you can get free legal advice and support;
- Where to get support if you are a victim of domestic violence or sexual assault;
- Contacts for LGBT people.
In order to cover such a wide range of subjects in a short pamphlet we had to keep it very basic. At the same time we tried to put as much information and contacts as possible.
Some of the advice will be useful for everyone, but a lot assume that the reader has the right to live and work in the UK, most likely because they are an EU citizen. We support everyone’s right to live wherever they choose to, no matter what passport they hold. Unfortunately things are much more complex for migrants from outside the EU, and we neither have the expertise required nor would be able to fit it in a small pamphlet.”