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Cambridge Will Act for Refugees

We the undersigned petition the council to 1) commit to extending the current Council refugee resettlement program to receive an additional 125 refugees or asylum seekers from abroad. 2) communicate to relevant agencies and departments in the UK Government, and through public statements, Cambridge City Council's willingness to welcome and support more refugees in Cambridge, especially, but not exclusively, refugees on the Greek islands who are stuck in unsafe and inhumane camps as well as through the UK Resettlement Scheme. 3) invite district councils within Cambridgeshire to join and collaborate with Cambridge City Council to commit to accept additional resettled refugees within their districts, as previously demonstrated by South Cambridgeshire District Council in 2019. 4) where possible, make council housing available to people resettled through this scheme. 5) commit to working with local agencies, residents, landlords and charities to resolve any barriers to resettlement or support, such as finding or subsidising affo

As a city, we continue to express solidarity and compassion for refugees around the world. We want our City Council to continue to live up to their previous commitment to be a 'city of sanctuary' by inviting and welcoming more refugees to share our diverse city with us.

The current scheme has successfully resettled around 125 refugees over 5 years to Cambridge from various countries and nationalities. The resettlement scheme has allowed us to welcome some of the most vulnerable of the millions of refugees worldwide. However, this cannot be a one-time solution: we must continue to show that Cambridge welcomes refugees.

We are particularly appalled by the treatment and experiences of an estimated 27,000 refugees trapped in camps on the Aegean Islands in Greece, as highlighted by the Europe Must Act campaign. Refugees in these camps face inadequate sanitary conditions, minimal running water and cramped living conditions. This is especially acute in light of the current pandemic: it is impossible to isolate, social distance and even wash your hands frequently in the camps. There are already 35 cases of Covid-19 amongst the Moria population.

The devastating fire in Moria which raged between 7th-9th September has given this situation new urgency. All have lost their homes; many have lost their life possessions. 40% of the affected people are children. The 35 known Covid-19 cases are now dispersed amongst the 13,000 people sleeping on the street.

The fire was a direct result of the conditions in the camp which Europe has consistently ignored for four years. The UK was instrumental in forming the policies which created these camps.

Therefore, although neither the EU nor the UK Government has committed to a process for local authorities to accept refugees evacuated from the camps, we would like Cambridge City Council to make clear it's wish for the UK to participate in such a process and the City Council’s willingness to receive refugees from the camps in Greece, in addition to refugees resettled from other places. The mayor and city council of Berlin have already committed to receive 15,000 people in this manner.

We would like to express great pride in the work done by the City Council and local charities and residents in resettling, welcoming and supporting refugees in Cambridge and ask that you keep going and don't let us down now.

This ePetition runs from 14/09/2020 to 13/12/2020.

657 people have signed this ePetition.