tsiMORAY call a public meeting to coordinate Refugee response

tsiMoray has called a public meeting to discuss Syrian refugee crisis.
tsiMoray has called a public meeting to discuss Syrian refugee crisis.

AN OPEN MEETING has been called by one of Moray’s leading voluntary organisations in a bid to find the best means of coordinating the local response to the Syrian Refugee crisis.

tsiMORAY is seeking to draw everyone together at a public meeting planned for the Elgin Town Hall later this month.

Development officer Elidh Brown said that the meeting will provide an opportunity for individuals and groups already involved or who wish to become involved in helping the local aid effort to come together and discuss their plans.

She said: “We are aware that many people are actively involved in a number of community actions and efforts such as donating and collecting items to send to Calais.

“We have learned recently that Moray will step up further and play its part in welcoming a number of refugee families from Syria – and we would like to bring together all who wish to help support these people to make Moray their home and feel welcome here.”

The meeting has been scheduled to take place in the Supper Room at the Town Hall from 6.30pm until 8pm on September 21, and it is hoped as many groups, organisations and individuals as possible attend to help in a coordinated effort to establish the support needs of refugee families.

Eilidh added: “We will also be looking at how we can all coordinate and support the efforts of the many organisations, groups and individuals who are currently responding to the humanitarian crisis in other practical ways.”

Further information can be obtained by contacting Eilidh by email at eildh@tsimoray.org.uk.

Just six refugees for each constituency

Meanwhile Moray’s MP Angus Robertson has hailed the backing of seven political parties who were united in a debate in the House of Commons in calling on the UK government to do more to help refugees from the Middle East.

The motion being debated on the SNP Opposition Day was led by Moray MP and SNP Westminster Leader Angus Robertson, and backed by Labour, Plaid Cymru, the Liberal Democrats, SDLP, the Greens and Ulster Unionists.

Mr Robertson has been inundated with messages of support for the refugees from people across Moray – including a significant number offering rooms in their own homes and others asking how they can donate money and essential items to help.

The Moray MP said: “This debate in the House of Commons saw an almost unprecedented sight of seven different political parties in the House of Commons uniting together, with a clear and simple message- the UK must do more to aid the humanitarian crisis.

“The SNP used its first Opposition Day debate because response from the UK government so far has been woefully inadequate. Whilst we welcomed their announcement of 20,000 refugees over the next five years it is simply not enough and only equates to six refugees per constituency, per year.

“I believe and I am sure many others believe that Moray could support more than six people.  Despite the Tories voting against the motion, the message from the overwhelming majority of parties in this parliament to the thousands of refugees seeking shelter is one of support and goodwill.

“The Prime Minister needs to wake up to this crisis.”