Forced migration

Fred Ashmore reports on a one-day conference at Friends House

Yarl’s Wood Immigration Removal Centre. | Photo: Oliver White via Wikimedia Commons.

Despite it being April fool’s day, there was an excellent turnout for the London Quakers’ conference on Forced Migration at Friends House. A practically full Sarah Fell room heard Stephen Hale, chief executive of Refugee Action, which provides a wide range of services for forced migrants, set out the background. He talked about what the charity – and those present – desire: to see asylum seekers rebuild a life where they need no further support. We want to pride ourselves on how the UK treats refugees, but this is difficult when our government creates a hostile environment in which the vast majority of forced migrants face suspicion, automatic disbelief and detention.

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