Collaboration needed to meet challenges from austerity

Rosario Guimba-Stewart, VAL trustee and  Chief Executive at Lewisham Refugee and Migrant Network, encourages organisations to work together 

The many challenges many refugees and migrants currently face are immense. 
The government’s ‘hostile environment’ for illegal migrants is wrecking the lives of those who have the right to be here. 
Landlords are now required to check on tenants’ immigration status or otherwise face hefty fines; this practice encourages racial profiling and discrimination. 
Banks, hospitals and schools are compelled to carry out immigration checks.
 
Detention and enforced removals of all foreign nationals including European Union (EU) citizens have risen sharply since the vote to leave the EU. 
Immigration fees have skyrocketed and have become unaffordable to many applicants. 
The Universal credit scheme has continued to fail claimants and has left many in rent arrears, homeless and unable to meet their basic needs. 
 
Austerity is on-going and funding cuts have affected the lives of many. The Windrush scandal is still very fresh and many are still waiting for their cases to be resolved.
The above make very compelling reasons for organisations which support refugees and migrants to come together, work collaboratively, share resources and ideas to help refugees and migrants in this difficult time. 
The Lewisham Migrants Forum, which had its first meeting a couple of months ago, would like to invite you on Tuesday 30 October from 3.00 to 5.00pm at the Civic Suite, Catford. 
 
We look forward to seeing you there and together let’s take the first steps to make Lewisham a sanctuary borough for refugees and migrants.
 
Rosario Guimba-Stewart, VAL trustee and  Chief Executive at Lewisham Refugee and Migrant Network,
 
If you are interested in finding out about more about collaboration opportunities in Lewisham register for 
Collaborate for Lewisham: let's work together!
 
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