A union representative said members were reporting that five to ten migrants each day were testing positive for the deadly virus. Lucy Moreton, of the Immigration Services Union, told The Times: “We have positive arrivals all the time, putting staff and migrants at risk of infection. We have a handful, between five and ten a day, testing positive, but anyone who has been in close contact with them — and that could be a lot, because of overcrowding — risks catching the virus.”
The numbers indicate that roughly three percent of arrivals are testing positive.
The UK as a whole has a Covid infection rate of just 1.6 percent, or one in 630 people.
The Home Office dismissed the figures provided by Ms Moreton, saying that no migrants had tested positive in May or June.
A spokesperson told The Times: “These numbers are completely wrong.
“In May and so far in June no migrants arriving via small boat have received a positive Covid test.
“Testing is in place to reduce the risk of infection for staff, contractors and small-boat arrivals.”
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Mr Smith expressed concerns that the UK does not have the capabilities to confront the current inflow of “irregular migration”.
He told the Telegraph: “There doesn’t seem to be a long term masterplan which is about accepting that this is going to be a feature of our lives for the foreseeable future and stop pretending that we are going to be able to stop this.
“I would be pressing for a more concentrated strategic management plan based on the fact that we have not been able to stop the boats.”