Friday, February 09, 2018

Let’s Work Together – to Reunite Refugee Families.

What if you could make a massive difference to the lives of refugees and their families – you’d do it right?

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That’s what our amazing STAR activists are doing up and down the country for our annual week of action from 16th to 23rd of February.

This year the focus is the Families Together Campaign – as this suggests it’s all about reuniting refugee families.

We all know how important family is – after all where would any of us be without our nearest and dearest?

As things stand refugee children and families who have been separated by war and persecution are kept apart by strict rules around family reunion.

The government has the power to change this at the stroke of a pen. That’s where STARs come in – and our partners – Oxfam, Amnesty International UK, Refugee Council and UNHCR.

Ministers need to know that changing the rules on family reunion is the right thing to do ahead of a crucial debate in Parliament on March 16th.

As Emma Williams, STAR’s chief executive, explains: “refugees should not be separated from their families.

“For refugees already living in safety in the UK the forced separation from their families and constant anxiety about their wellbeing can be devastating, preventing them from rebuilding their lives.”

“I’m proud that STAR groups will be working together during this week of action to make clear the importance of keeping #FamiliesTogether.”

The majority of our STAR groups across the UK are planning events large and small for Action Week. Crucially they are writing letters to their MPs and delivering these in person to ask that their representatives attend the debate in Westminster.

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In Birmingham a rally in support of the Family Reunion Bill is being held on Friday 23rd February at Mermaid Square at the university.

This will take place between 11am and 3pm and will include speeches from local MPs, refugees and STAR’s Emma Williams among others.

Our Glasgow University Group are planning a whole month of actions leading up to the event in Parliament.

Sure to be one of the highlights is their plan to use Valentine’s Day – 14th February of course – to show people how much you love them.

The Glasgow STARs say they will be ‘delivering the finest roses to unsuspecting individuals at their desks around the main library, reading room and medical library for just £2 each’.

On 15th February – between 10am and 2pm at 6 Bedford Sq – the team from New York University London will be decorating cardboard letters that spell FAMILY and taking pictures of people holding these up.

The pictures will then go up in a collage outside Parliament to demonstrate the huge support there is for the Bill and for #FamiliesTogether

Posted by STAR team on 09/02/2018 at 04:40 PM