Asylum centres closing as arrival numbers fall

Number of refugees coming to Denmark way lower than expected

The dwindling number of asylum-seekers coming to Denmark has prompted several municipalities to close down centres and cut staff.

In the municipalities of Jammerbugt and Vesthimmerland alone, the centres have been forced to let go 90 employees since June. Meanwhile, the immigration authority, Udlændingestyrelsen, intends to close down a children’s centre in Vester Hjermitslev and the Sommersted asylum centre near Haderslev.

“When the level of activity declines, we are forced to take a look and see whether we have the necessary number of employees to handle the tasks,” Torben Gregersen, the head of asylum centres in Vesthimmerland, told DR Nyheder.

READ MORE: Denmark criticised for not doing enough to assess torture risk for returning asylum-seekers

Fewer than expected
As of today, Jammerbugt Municipality runs ten asylum centres, while Vesthimmerland operates nine, and both municipality are expecting to oversee further asylum centre closures in the future.

The government had expected around 25,000 asylum-seekers would hit Denmark this year, but so far only 5,000 have arrived.

The lower than anticipated asylum-seeker rate has led to cost savings of upwards of 2.6 billion kroner.