The Council yesterday approved a motion put forward by the Greens calling for the Council to work with the community and voluntary sector to provide a coordinated response to support Syrian refugees. The motion also called for the Council to request further financial and practical help so that the city can accommodate refugees for longer than one year where necessary.
The motion comes in the wake of a huge outpouring of support from local residents, and calls from community groups such as Sanctuary-by-the-Sea for the city to do what it can to help the plight of refugees fleeing perilous conflict in Syria.
Leo Littman, Green Councillor for Preston Park and proposer of the motion, said:
“The decision taken today is great news, and means we can finally start preparing to receive Syrian refugees in earnest. We’ve heard from many residents desperate to help, and it’s time we put this goodwill to good use.
“The Greens recognise the huge financial challenges facing the city, due to the relentless pursuit of austerity by the Conservative central government. As such, we need to ensure we can respond without causing added pressures on budgets. The key to doing this is working with the community while requesting additional funding from central government.
“The agreement reached today means we can prepare our response appropriately and avoid incurring unnecessary costs in the future. Most importantly, we can offer meaningful help to refugees fleeing for their lives and asking us for sanctuary”.