Tuesday, 24 November 2015

No Racism: Refugees Welcome Here

The St Andrew's Day Anti-Racism March and Rally this year has the theme 'No Racism: Refugees Welcome Here.' The rally will take place on Sat 28th Nov, Assemble 10:30am Glasgow Green. Below is a Guest Blog from Ruth Davidson MSP, Leader of the Scottish Conservative Party on the importance of this March.

Nobody could fail to be moved by the humanitarian crisis which continues to unfold. 

The testimony of the men, woman and children who risk everything they have to escape an intolerable situation, is hugely affecting.

The UK is a moral nation and we fulfil our moral responsibilities.

I am proud that we are the first G7 nation to meet its commitment to spend 0.7 per cent of our economy on aid. I am pleased, too, that the UK is allocating £1 billion in aid and development programmes to help with the Syrian refugee crisis – more than any country bar America. The Prime Minister has also appointed a new Minister for Refugees

It is right too, that our country has offered sanctuary to 20,000 refugees, resettled directly from camps in Turkey, Jordan and Lebanon. 

Importantly, this approach balances the need to give shelter, with the need to discourage vulnerable families from making the dangerous journeys across the Mediterranean. 

But simply accepting refugees is not enough. 

We have to support our local communities, too. That is why we will use the foreign aid budget to help councils provide critical services, such as housing. 

The challenge now is to build on our commitments. Those coming here fleeing the worst of circumstances need to feel welcomed.

We must all continue to do our bit to ensure that Scotland’s cultural and racial diversity is seen as one of our nation’s great assets, rather than as a threat. For this diversity is something which makes our country, and, especially, our cities, such incredible places to live and work.

We all have our own part to play in championing this message. 

That’s why it is so important that this STUC No Racism rally - and others like it- continue to take place to ensure we can promote a future without racism. 

The STUC has long shown an admirable commitment to this fight and I stand proudly with them.

Ruth Davidson 
Leader Scottish Conservative Party

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