Campaigners have raised fears as to whether a Home Office contractor could 'flee the city', leaving some asylum seekers cut adrift as the current housing contract for refugees comes to an end.

In the coming months Home Office contracts providing accommodation in Glasgow to those seeking asylum will transition from current provider Serco to the Mears Group.

While Mears will take up housing provision in September, their contract states they are only liable for 'eligible' asylum seekers, not those in the 'over-stayer' group.

At present, Serco are attempting to evict around 300 asylum seekers who they claim have exhausted all options to remain in the UK.

However, a legal challenge is ongoing to challenge their use of lock-changes to remove these people from their homes.

Groups supporting refugees have now challenged the Home Office to provide an explanation as to why their contracts with both contractors permit such behaviour.

Graham O’Neill, Scottish Refugee Council's policy manager, said: "The Home Office, not Serco, have ultimate responsibility for the welfare of all those seeking, granted and refused refugee protection, who are in Glasgow.

"The Home Office have a duty to ensure transition is handled well, and by definition it won’t be if it leaves vulnerable people street homeless.

"We are not only deeply concerned with the Home Office cutting this vulnerable population adrift to be left with Serco only, once Mears take over at the start of September, but we question whether the Home Office’s own contract with Serco and Mears permits that to happen.

READ MORE: Serco quizzed on Glasgow asylum seeker eviction methods

"The city requires that explanation.”

The removals by Serco look set to begin within the next ten days, with fears those taken from their homes could be left destitute on the streets of Glasgow.

The multi-million pound group say they are not being paid to accommodate those in this group, and that they plan to have carried out all evictions by the end of their contract, with no housing staff remaining in the city.

READ MORE: Home Office contractor slammed over asylum seeker housing conditions

When asked what their plan was if all 300 evictions were not carried out, Serco said they would not speculate on a hypothetical situation.

Serco's Jenni Halliday said: “By the end of September 2019 we will no longer have any people providing housing services in Glasgow, neither will we have a licence to provide accommodation.

"Accordingly, in the coming months we are going to have to return all the housing we rent in Glasgow to its owners at the end of the leases.

"This is why we are restarting our lock-change programme so that properties may be returned to their owners with vacant possession in accordance with our contractual obligations.”

READ MORE: Asylum seeker lock change evictions plan by Serco sparks anger in Glasgow

Groups defending asylum seekers from evictions now fear this could mean Serco will suddenly clear out of Glasgow in September, leaving the city to step in and support these refugees.

Living Rent organiser Sean Bailie said: "Any situation where Serco flee the city leaving their responsibilities unfulfilled must be taken seriously. In such a vacuum of accountability landlords who will regain possession of their property will be ill equipped to handle the situation appropriately and safely.

READ MORE: Glaswegians protest against Serco evictions

"Ultimately unless Mears step in to take management of these properties it will be left to the people of Glasgow to step in as we always have.

"There is no reason in our eyes why they have refused to take on the agreements for these 300 properties. Indeed this would have and still can prevent this scenario playing out any further."

This statement comes as campaigners, including Living Rent, organised a protest at Serco offices in Glasgow, with similar events to be held in the coming weeks.

Despite this plea, bosses from the Mears Group have reiterated they have no responsibility for 'ineligible asylum seekers' when their contract begins.

A Mears spokesperson added: "The current issues regarding ineligible asylum seekers are matters for the Home Office and the current contractor.

"We are in the process of agreeing an approach that is appropriate for the new contract and are in discussions.

READ MORE: Council plan to allow asylum seekers to work in Glasgow

"Mears are committed to supporting all those in our accommodation. In cases where an individual is refused, we will follow the due legal process, respect all rights of review and appeal, and make sure that they have access to advice and support to reach the best outcome.”

A Home Office spokesperson said: “The Home Office takes the wellbeing of asylum seekers and the local communities in which they live extremely seriously.

“We have and will continue to work closely with local authorities and partners to ensure that those who have no right to be in the UK leave their accommodation in a safe and secure way.

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“We have been working with Glasgow City Council and other partners to ensure those at risk of potential eviction have the necessary advice on their options.”