Rochdale MP, Tony Lloyd, has slammed the UK Government for extensive delays in the processing of community sponsorship applications, and demands secured funding and resources for community sponsorship groups ahead of the Government extending the Community Sponsorship scheme to include Afghan refugees.
Community-based sponsorship programs allow individuals to directly engage in refugee resettlement efforts. Sponsors commit to providing financial, emotional and resettlement support to help newly-arrived refugees integrate into life in a new country.
Tony said, “Community sponsorship creates a warmer welcome for refugees. When communities lead the welcome, refugees have the benefit of a local support network from their first day here.
“Hundreds of these groups have already welcomed more than 500 refugees to the UK. They played an integral part in resettling Syrian refugees since 2016.
“But extensive delays in the processing of community sponsorship applications will hinder these groups playing an important role when supporting he resettlement of Afghan refugees.
“That’s why I’m demanding the UK Government provides the funding and resources needed to speed up administration of that scheme. As a decent and humanitarian country, we should be doing everything we can to help those who have suffered the trauma of war, persecution and conflict.”
Tony is one of 38 cross-party MPs who have signed a Parliamentary motion, demanding secure funding and resources for community sponsorship groups. The groups support the refugees through their first year in the UK to live independent lives, learn English, and access schools, benefits, healthcare and employment and participate fully in the community.
Notes for Editors:-
• The full text of the Early Day Motion (EDM), and a list of signatories, can be found here