In August 2021, the Taliban seized Afghanistan, bringing an end to the country's 20-year involvement with the United States. Thousands of residents fled the country in hopes of finding safety away from the Taliban’s control, according to The New York Times.
Many people displaced due to conflict in Afghanistan are forced to live in hotels: It has been seven months since the Taliban took over Afghanistan. As of early March, there are likely more than 4,000 Afghan citizens still living in hotels, with no idea when they’ll find a permanent home, according to NPR.
Refugee relief organizations are running out of resources: Hotel costs for some of these families are being paid for by local refugee resettlement agencies around the U.S.
- Some of these funds are only able to support a family for three months, and many of them have no idea where they will go once the money runs out, according to NPR.
The difficulty of finding permanent housing: Sonik Sadozai is a volunteer for Afghan Refugee Relief in Orange County, California. She told NPR that there are more than 100 families looking for shelter, but the organization is finding this to be a difficult task.
“Rents in Southern California are high — and landlords are reluctant to rent to tenants with no credit history,” according to NPR.
Refugees in the United Kingdom: This problem isn’t unique to the United States. There are still thousands of displaced Afghan refugees without permanent housing in the United Kingdom.
- The U.K.’s Home Office reports that as of February, there were around 12,000 people still living in hotels, according to the Independent.
Challenges in starting a new life: After fleeing from their country for safety, some Afghan people are finding it difficult to feel welcome in the countries in which they are seeking refuge, according to multiple reports.
- “Far too many traumatized men, women, and children remain in hotel accommodation, where a lack of information and vital support make it very difficult for them to begin the challenging process of rebuilding their lives,” said Enver Solomon to the Independent. Solomon is the chief executive of the Refugee Council.
- “The GP (general practitioner) says they will support us initially, but they know we are temporary guests here, so they don’t want to waste their resources. It’s the same as schools and local councils — they see us as temporary,” said an anonymous Afghan father to the Independent.
- “The hotel we are living (in) is good, but we are feeling restless. We are feeling like a passenger,” said another Afghan father, Aziz, to NPR. Aziz used to work as a doctor and adviser to the Minister of Public Health in Kabul. He did not want his last name used in fear of retaliation from the Taliban.