Dear Stephen 

Transparency of Homes for Ukraine sponsorship scheme management information 

I understand that the Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities (DLUHC), Home Office and UK devolved administration analysts are working together to ensure that any data produced and communicated to the public about the Government’s ‘Home for Ukraine’ scheme, and related data needs, are coherent and useful for their intended purposes. This is very good news. It was great to see new visa sponsorship scheme data published by the Home Office last week, including by devolved administration, and from today by local authority, and new data on arrivals of visa-holders in the UK, also published today.

However, since the launch of the Homes for Ukraine scheme, figures on the number of households or organisations that have signed up as potential sponsors under the scheme have been quoted publicly by government and the media (e.g. 150,000 Britons, Therese Coffey, Oral Statement to Parliament, 21 March; 150,000 households or organisations, Homes for Ukraine webpages, 24 March – since removed; over 200,000 people, Alberto Costa, Newsnight, 4 April), with the unit of measurement varying by source. It is disappointing that no further information has been published to support or explain these statements.

Intelligent transparency around government data is important to support trust in data and the decisions based on these data. Management information already publicly quoted should be published in a timely manner, including appropriate caveats to enable accurate interpretation by the public. Our Regulatory guidance for the transparent release and use of statistics and data sets out our expectations.

Given inevitable future public interest in additional related information (local authority distributions, associated funding allocations etc) it would be helpful for forward analysis plans to be published, including on the scope, detail and frequency of planned outputs. This would also reflect the good work currently being undertaken by government analysts.

I am copying this letter to Sandra Tudor, Head of Profession for Statistics, DLUHC, Simon Palmer, Director of Home Office Analysis and Insight, Home Office, Roger Halliday Chief Statistician, Scottish Government, Stephanie Howarth, Chief Statistician, Welsh Government, and Siobhan Carey, Chief Executive and Registrar General, Northern Ireland Statistics and Research Agency.

Yours sincerely  

Ed Humpherson
Director General for Regulation