Like many in Brighton and Hove, and indeed around the UK and across the world, the Labour Group have watched with mounting concern the tragedy unfolding in Afghanistan in recent weeks. On this, as on many other important issues in recent times, we have been astonished, infuriated and frustrated at the scale of the UK government’s complacency and mismanagement of this crisis situation, and the inadequacy of its proposed response.
The scheme announced yesterday to support Afghan refugees is vague; the details and timeframe are unclear; and the numbers are low and spread out over a period that could stretch to seven or more years. There are many thousands of people in Afghanistan – particularly vulnerable women and children, as well as people who have worked with British forces in education and other vital areas – who need help NOW, today, tomorrow, this week, because they are living under existential threat. Our government needs to respond to this emergency more urgently, both alone and in conjunction with NATO & the USA.
We are very proud of and committed to our work on acquiring and retaining Brighton and Hove’s status as a City of Sanctuary and call on both the national government and the council’s Green administration to act with all possible speed to secure the necessary support and funding to welcome some of the traumatised people to live in safety amongst our inclusive and kind communities. Refugees are welcome here.
Photo Credit: Creative Commons.