Both The Royal Borough of Greenwich and Waltham Forest have officially been named as Boroughs of Sanctuary.
There are now twelve Local Authorities across the UK who have achieved this award – three of which are in London. These awards mean that these Local Authorities have committed to prioritising welcome and compassion for people seeking sanctuary. This is a community-wide effort involving all departments across a Council, people with lived experience of the asylum system, community groups, schools, libraries and more.
“Royal Greenwich has a proud tradition of welcoming people fleeing violence and persecution. We will not turn our back on people who need our help. “ said Cllr Anthony Okereke.
“As the government continues to ramp up hostility towards refugees, asylum seekers and migrants, we must continue to fight back. Councils across the country have a key role to play in standing up for and protecting people’s rights, and I would urge them to follow suit in becoming a Borough or City of Sanctuary.”
In Waltham Forest, Cllr Grace Williams said: “I’m proud that we have been recognised as an official Borough of Sanctuary. Waltham Forest has gained so much from people who have come here from around the world and enriched our community.”
“We want to make all people arriving in the borough to feel welcome, acknowledge the trauma they have been through to get here, and help them rebuild their lives. One of the priorities of any local authority should be to provide essential support for residents in times of need, and our new Welcome Hub is just one of the ways we can ensure all migrants and refugees are welcomed and have access to the support they need to make a good life for themselves and their families in Waltham Forest.”
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