The Home Office is a key department of the UK Government, responsible for the management of immigration, drugs, crime, counterterrorism and law and order. Their work is fundamental to the management of the UK’s security and economy.
A key part of their role is the responsibility to secure the borders and control immigration, ensuring that immigration legislation is enforced, and that the correct rules of entry are followed.
The U.K. has seen a sharp rise in immigration over recent years, with an increase in people fleeing troubled countries and making the challenging decision to leave their homes, families and livelihoods.
Typically coming from some of the poorest countries in the world, people are risking their lives by traveling across the channel in dinghies and small boats that are often extremely overcrowded and unsafe. A significant proportion are thought to consist of unaccompanied minors.
The Home Office required a reliable, nationwide solution with various modes of transport including private ambulances, to provide safe onward movement for migrants arriving in the UK.
It also became an additional requirement that all vehicles would need to be compliant with the government covid-19 guidelines.
CMAC determined a solution that provides planned and emergency transportation to service the Home Office’s operations through our extensive, covid-compliant nationwide network of suppliers. Our suppliers are one of the first touch points for individuals as they reach the UK, therefore we spend time briefing and hand selecting those that we deem suitable, to ensure they understand the magnitude of their involvement.
The partnership has evolved since the initial contract invocation, and CMAC now deliver three separate solutions:
1. Safe onward travel for migrants
This is the initial strategy CMAC was contracted to provide.
As the numbers of migrants arriving has increased, the demand for this service has grown. CMAC provide a range of vehicles, some of which are pre-booked, and we also ensure the availability for emergency vehicles, as required.
2. Covid specialist transportation
It was essential that the Home Office introduced a strategy for migrants suspected or confirmed to have covid-19. CMAC sourced a specialist supplier who employs trained medical professionals, so those who produce a positive result can be safely transferred to an appropriate location.
The drivers are all Care and Quality Commission registered. This is the only body that can legitimise the service. They are also trained in Infection Prevention Control Compliance, the implications of covid-19 on IPC and First Responder First Aid, as well as being fully compliant with NHS guidance relating to the transportation of people confirmed or suspected to be covid-19 positive.
All vehicles can ensure social distancing, are wiped down in between passengers, are fitted with a separation screen and are DipTac compliant, ensuring access for disabled users.
3. Standby static vehicles
CMAC also sourced a specialist double decker bus that remains on site all day to provide a warm environment, as well as somewhere to identify each migrant and complete paperwork. CMAC monitor weather forecasts to attain suitable levels of availability and have the Operations Team on high alert, with standby personnel should volumes significantly increase.
The weather conditions are a key factor that determine the crossings and therefore the demand for transport. High seas and strong winds result in fewer or no boats crossing, in comparison to a day where the sea is much calmer. CMAC’s extensive supplier network ensures back up transportation is available on hand, to be dispatched as and when required.