14 April 2022
Statement responding to Rwanda offshoring deal
Zoë Abrams, former executive director of strategy, advocacy and communications at the British Red Cross: “We are profoundly concerned that the UK Government has passed a Bill into law that proposes to send traumatised people half-way round the world to Rwanda.
“The financial and human cost will be considerable; evidence from where offshoring has been implemented elsewhere shows it leads to real human suffering, plus the bill that taxpayers will be asked to foot is likely to be huge.
“We are not convinced this drastic measure will deter desperate people from attempting to cross the Channel either. People come here for reasons we can all understand, like wanting to be reunited with loved ones, or because they speak the language. Making it harsher may do little to stop them risking their lives.
“The UK has a proud history of helping people when they are fleeing from war and persecution. From the Kindertransport to the huge outpouring of public support we have seen for refugees from Ukraine, we know that the British people want us to be a force for good in the world when people are facing major crisis."
Notes to editors:
The British Red Cross is the largest independent provider of support to refugees and people seeking asylum in the UK. Last year, the charity worked with around 29,000 people at all stages of the asylum process.
For over 150 years, the British Red Cross has helped people in crisis, whoever and wherever they are. We are part of a global voluntary network, responding to conflicts, natural disasters and individual emergencies. We enable vulnerable people in the UK and abroad to prepare for and withstand emergencies in their own communities. And when the crisis is over, we help them recover and move on with their lives
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