Residents voice concerns in heated meeting over asylum seekers in Skegness
Video report by Amelia Beckett
Hundreds of people have attended a meeting to voice their concerns over the number of hotels housing asylum seekers in Skegness.
The event on Friday evening was organised by Conservative Boston and Skegness MP Matt Warman who says the situation is unfair on the town.
Five hotels are being used to house over 200 asylum seekers while they are processed.
Residents shared their fears that Skegness will no longer be a beloved family resort, harming business for years to come.
One woman warned: "I ran a hotel in Margate, where this exact same thing has already happened. It died the same death that people are worried about here."
Another resident said the town's cheap hotels meant it was being used as "dumping ground".
Matt Warman met with the Home Secretary Suella Braverman earlier in the week to put residents' concerns to her.
He said: "Three points that I've made time and time again, as have many other members of parliament, is that we need to deter people from making those journeys across the Channel in the first place.
"We need to speed up processing so that people are not in hotels or whatever accommodation for as long as they currently are, and we need to make sure that we look at alternative forms of accommodation, such as disused military barracks which have been used elsewhere."
Many of the asylum seekers housed in Skegness have fled war-torn countries such as Iraq, Afghanistan and Eritrea.
Despite the concerns from locals, charities are urging people to have compassion.
Ed Walker from Hope Into Action said: "Everyone in that hotel has a mother, has a father, probably has a brother, maybe has a child.
"They have fled for their lives, they are in refuge, they are traumatised and they may be scared."
The Home Office was invited to the meeting but did not attend.
It has told ITV News the use of hotels to house asylum seekers is "unacceptable" and is a short term solution.
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