LibLink:: Christine Jardine: Refugees like Alan Kurdi are still dying in the Med

In her Scotsman column, Christine Jardine highlighted the plight of asylum seekers.

According to the group Medecins Sans Frontieres, there is now no search and rescue taking place in the Mediterranean. Only the Libyan coastguard is picking up people in its waters and taking them to detention centres. So far this year, it is estimated that 1,277 lives have been lost, many of them children. It’s only a little over three years since public opinion in this country and across the globe was outraged by the image of a toddler – three-year-old Alan Kurdi – lying dead in the breaking waves on a Mediterranean beach.

But when those hopeless faces of refugees off the Kent coast appeared on my TV screen this week, I had a moment of doubt. I’m not convinced we are currently living up to the reputation of those previous generations.

She also highlighted the plight of those who do make it here:

But right now, those people, many of whom do have valuable skills and experience to offer, are being stripped of their dignity and condemned to an existence on the very periphery of our society.

Instead, why don’t we recognise the contribution they could make and lift the ban on genuine asylum seekers from working? Allow them to seek employment after three months of claiming sanctuary, while their case is progressed?

Currently, you have to have been seeking asylum for more than 12 months and be able to fill one of a very narrow list of highly specialised jobs. The system is so enormously complicated that often even the Government has no clue who has applied, or whether anyone has found work. Of course, it is very possible that many asylum seekers may be too traumatised to work immediately. That is a different issue. But opening up the right to employment after three months would be an immediate route towards integration into local communities. It would help people to learn English and allow them to contribute to society – all things asylum seekers tell us they badly want to do.

You can read the whole article here.

* Newshound: bringing you the best Lib Dem commentary published in print or online.

Read more by or more about or .
This entry was posted in LibLink.
Advert

Post a Comment

Lib Dem Voice welcomes comments from everyone but we ask you to be polite, to be on topic and to be who you say you are. You can read our comments policy in full here. Please respect it and all readers of the site.

If you are a member of the party, you can have the Lib Dem Logo appear next to your comments to show this. You must be registered for our forum and can then login on this public site with the same username and password.

To have your photo next to your comment please signup your email address with Gravatar.

Your email is never published. Required fields are marked *

*
*
Please complete the name of this site, Liberal Democrat ...?

Advert



Recent Comments

  • User AvatarMichael 1 22nd Apr - 3:57pm
    @John Marriott Certainly the SDP split from Labour, along with a big lurch of Labour to the left (which prompted the split) at a time...
  • User AvatarMike Read 22nd Apr - 3:42pm
    expats, If you look at the results of the local by-elections taken place so far this year (from electionmaps), the Lib Dems have won 21%...
  • User AvatarRichard Elliott 22nd Apr - 3:37pm
    Much negative comment on your prospects and against change uk, but we should recognise that Change UK are establishing their brand and welcome the fact...
  • User AvatarInnocent Bystander 22nd Apr - 3:33pm
    Cassie and frankie, I was shocked to hear that you fell for that propaganda and were duped into voting Leave. What's that? You weren't? You...
  • User AvatarLorenzo Cherin 22nd Apr - 3:27pm
    I welcomed the new TIG launch, then, Change UK. I am not tribal. I suggested we relaunch, rebrand years before, under Tim's leadership. I liked...
  • User AvatarKatharine Pindar 22nd Apr - 2:58pm
    I don't see why Lib Dems should be 'embarrassed' at all, John Marriott, if we are obliged to participate in the Euro elections - the...