Mean-spirited take on refugee crisis

migrants and refugees
migrants and refugees
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Like many purporting to speak for the people of Sheffield on the subject of refugees and asylum seekers, Cameron of Eckington appears to be living in the world of his own fevered imagination, (Letters, August 18).

Under two government initiatives, the Gateway Protection Programme and the Syrian Vulnerable Persons Relocation Scheme, the council is planning to resettle 150 refugees a year from now until 2019.

This is not ‘thousands’. And since those who qualify for resettlement will be coming from other jurisdictions (i.e. camps in Jordan and Lebanon), the authorities in Sheffield should know their identities before they arrive.

Only someone intent on dehumanising those he disapproves of would describe them as people ‘with no names’.

Cameron wants to know what security measures the council has in place.

Doesn’t he know that refugees and asylum seekers are many times more likely to be victims of crime than perpetrators?

He implies that housing refugees can only be done at the expense of homeless Sheffielders.

Doesn’t he know that the cost of resettling people under a Government scheme is borne by the Treasury?

If the Council has trouble meeting its existing commitments to the people of Sheffield, the culprits are sitting comfortably in their plush Whitehall offices. To stir resentment against those whose suffering most of us can barely begin to imagine is shameful.

Cameron’s remarks about Europe and Africa are incoherent and beside the point. Syrian refugees are coming to Sheffield from the Middle East not Calais. Of course many of those arriving on the northern shores of the Mediterranean are from Africa. Hasn’t he noticed how brutal life can be in parts of that continent?

Cameron saves his most ludicrous comment for the end, going out in a blaze of apocalyptic hysteria. Sheffield, a city of half a million people, on its way to being destroyed by a few hundred disorientated and traumatized men, women and children. And all this under the cunning direction of a council I suspect he normally wouldn’t trust to organise the proverbial function in a brewery.

He clearly thinks his fellow citizens are pathetic victims-in-waiting, with no more gumption than compassion. His silly, mean-spirited, inaccurate take on refugees is not Sheffield’s.

Kevin Hanson

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