Barbara Forbes (Bull Street Quaker and QARN member) invites Central England Friends to be part of a revitalised Asylum Group.
It will not have escaped your notice that the government is pursuing an increasingly hostile agenda towards asylum-seekers, using inflammatory language and falsifying statistics to stir up negative emotions in the general public, passing legislation which violates international law, treating people in a way which is inhumane and degrading, and creating a situation where people who do not receive full refugee status are forced to pay extortionate visa fees in a form of debt bondage which is one of the indicators of modern slavery.
It is quite heart-breaking in this situation that the Central England Asylum Group is no longer functioning. Those of us who were active in the group before the pandemic and who are willing to try to bring it back to life, would welcome support from all the Meetings in our Area Meeting either by committing to taking part in zoom meetings (which at the moment seems safer than face-to-face) or by offering to be a Meeting correspondent.
As part of the Quaker Asylum and Refugee Network (QARN) our hope is that the work of QARN can be supported at local level by encouraging Friends to inform themselves about the ongoing situation, possibly arrange study meetings, take note of the information QARN has provided including a brand-new leaflet preparing for a General Election, writing to MPs, and supporting relevant local charities and organisations.
We are proposing to arrange a zoom meeting to take this forward in November. Please contact Barbara Forbes for further details and to put us in touch with individuals who would like to get involved in any way.