Harlow protestors call on council and government to do more to help Afghan refugees

Politics / Tue 21st Sep 2021 at 05:14pm

AROUND 40 protesters from Harlow Stand up to Racism gathered in the town centre on Sunday to call on the government to allow more Afghans to seek asylum in Britain and for Harlow Council to do more to help refugees fleeing war and persecution in Afghanistan.

Speakers included Jamie Gilbert from the Green Party, Labour Party member Kay Morrison, Mick Patrick from Harlow Trades Council, Rose Wormold from the charity Care for Calais and Saira Plane and Jackson Rochford from Stand up to Racism.

Campaigners demanded there should be no cap on Afghans coming to Britain and the current proposal of 5,000 this year, 20,000 in total, is not addressing the scale of humanitarian crisis. They also argued this inadequate proposal is likely to be undermined by the Nationality and Borders Bill – dubbed the “Anti-Refugee Bill” – and must be scrapped.

Many Afghans currently in Britain have been refused asylum in Britain and are waiting to be deported. Protesters called on the government to announce an amnesty for all Afghans in Britain.

Passers by offered support and many came up to donate clothes and essential items for the refugees, gratefully received by Care for Calais.

Local Stand up to Racism campaigner Saira Plane said: ‘Being here today to show our support for Afghan refugees is so important and is at the centre of our fight against racism today.

“It is not true that we are not capable of helping Afghan refugees. We, in this country, are no more deserving of human rights than other human beings born in different circumstances. Refusing to help is abhorrent and inhumane. It is a political choice made by this government. Like it was a political choice to bomb the people of Afghanistan in the first place. We have a duty now to say Afghan refugees are welcome here.’

Sabby Dhalu, Co-Convenor of Stand up to Racism said: “We demand that the government provide sanctuary for all Afghans that need to seek asylum in Britain. The government’s proposal of allowing in only 5,000 Afghan refugees this year, and 20,000 people in total, is woefully inadequate and nowhere near meets the scale of the crisis. As the humanitarian crisis further unfolds it’s clear more needs to be done.

“We support the call for an amnesty for Britain based Afghan asylum seekers. It beggars belief that Afghan asylum seekers have been refused asylum. This must be reversed. The Nationality and Borders Bill dubbed the ‘Anti-Refugee Bill’ by refugees and supporting charities, will make it harder for people to seek asylum in Britain at a time when the government need to allow in more refugees. We call on the government to scrap the Anti-Refugee Bill.”

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11 Comments for Harlow protestors call on council and government to do more to help Afghan refugees:

Tony Durcan
2021-09-21 17:37:45

I find it extremely difficult to understand why Harlow Tory council can’t support some activity for this important issue. Many of these people can’t stay in their own country as they supported and protected our own army forces. The deserve our respect and support. They have had to give up everything and had to flee. Surly we have to hold the hand of friendship out and find a Harlow way to thank them and protect them. Many will have professional qualifications so will add to the economy. If we can’t accommodate then let fund another council or charity to help them. Doing nothing and turning your back may be the Tory way buts it’s not the Harlow way. Harlow was born for migrate workers we have a proud record in supporting others ,let’s not lose the moral compass for cheap votes and here today gone tomorrow headlines Come on council show some leadership.

2021-09-21 17:40:47

There are many people of all parts of the world waiting for asylum and if the afghan refugees are fast tracked how about the ones waiting 10 years, I believe as a decent citizen of the united kingdom, that we need to collaborate with the world to live a happy and safe life for all, so I think the government should allow asylum for all waiting citizens in the UK at this current moment, they will do the jobs that are currently no fulfilled. UAE gave the UK 14 Billion this week, so if you want to get people working and happy again, you need to adapt, the world is only spinning in one direction.

2021-09-21 18:25:45

Strange isn't it that at the very minimum they have to cross 2 borders to get here France and Spain so what is the attraction? This is the land of milk and honey for them and also look at the ones pictured on boats/dinghies, They are economic migrants Very hard to see a family unit as most are young males although the MSM also show the young child pictures. Genuine refugees are a different case.

2021-09-21 20:18:00

Ah, yes, the "Good Migrant vs Bad Migrant" nonsense. So, what makes a migrant 'Good", "Acceptable", or "Genuine"? Is it where they have come from? Is it the number of borders they haver crossed? Is it their method of transport? This is of course utter nonsense. The solution is not to try to find “genuine” immigrants, but to say people are welcome here and to detoxify the term immigrant. So we should stick to the UN definition of a migrant as someone who moves to another country to live for a year or more. And let’s unashamedly argue that all migrants should be welcome here. The vast majority of migrants make a positive contribution. Some just want to get a job and do normal stuff without getting killed. Others become good at tennis and win prizes.

Saddam A, Kan
2021-09-21 21:13:04

As a migrant, I was subjected to many years of racism and abuse since moving to the UK from Iraq. I have had to explain to many people that I am not a terrorist, that I am not a political threat and that I am not a danger. There is a preconceived notion that by being brown and Iraqi - or foreign of any kind, that you are a danger to the “Britishness” of the country. I am sad when I feel that people don’t want me here. I am only trying to live and survive like the rest here, I ran from a country that fell apart. I lost all that I had, and I searched political asylum on grounds of fear for my life. My application was accepted after 5 years. We need to help these people, they’re often good and honest hard working individuals who will do nothing but love and protect their new land. They are not a danger. They are not bad. They aren’t interested in your benefits or money, only that they can survive. Like me, they’re of the same cloth. I welcome them, and if you don’t - you best have a better reason other than “Harlow politician this and Torys that”, it’s absurd to ignore the fundamentals in this case - they are human beings with a right to life, who have done nothing but try to survive as best they can. The British army and US allied forces went to Afghanistan, required support during their almost 20 year campaign and up and left one day, of course those who helped the “invading and occupying forces” would seek reward for putting their life in danger... show love, people, not hate.

2021-09-22 05:56:35

Who do these people think they are? Can i protest against having any more Afghans over here? I know for a fact some of these people don’t even live in Harlow. The waiting list for tax paying English people is over 18 years. We are full. Im sick amd tired of people trying to ruin our English values and way of life. 😡

Simon Cook
2021-09-22 10:15:21

They deserve our help, the vast majority want to work and pay taxes which helps us all. If you actually spoke to these people you would find they are much the same as any other person, it would "humanise" them. Some who read the newspapers think they are sub-human, they find themselves more concerned about dogs than humans. They should realise that the amount those tax dodging newspaper owners cost the UK economy is far far more than any refugee. I wonder why you don't read about that but think refugees are the issue....?

2021-09-22 17:17:19

Well Simon & Saddam, dont you think you are lucky enough without being the spokesperson of whats good for MY place of birth. These animals need telling not to rape women so please convince me that my 20% tax money is not going towards giving a house and income just so a small majority can feel better about the situation. We have enough quota filled jobs amd box tickers, im not afraid to stand up for the white man. Im born and bread and these are NOT welcome ill do what i can to stop these snowflakes getting their own way. We have made the right decision let that be final.

e Mitchell
2021-09-22 22:28:12

what about our armed forces, left to live on the streets, no home ,no three meals a days, some payed the ultimate sacrifice..charity begins at home...

2021-09-23 10:47:36

Why does this council want refugees??? Where are they going to be housed??? My daughter is WHITE & BRITISH, but can't get anywhere to live. She is married with 4 kids in a 2 bed 1st floor flat. She was offered a 3 bed flat but it was on top floor with no lift. She's been bidding for 9 years. If council can find homes for refugees, then they can find my daughter somewhere & of course the homeless, or don't the White British count anymore

2021-09-23 16:19:23

how many refugees are these protesters taking into their homes, unless they do why should people on the waiting list not feel angry about being pushed back.

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