Sussex students support Calais refugees
Sussex students and Brighton groups collaborated to give food, blankets and suitcases to refugees being expelled from the notorious Calais Jungle.
Thousands of people were evicted last week following the camp’s demolition, leaving them vulnerable and uncertain about their future.
The Calais Actions Emergency Appeal has engaged Brighton groups including the Institute of Development Studies Refugee Action Project (IDSRAP) at the University of Sussex to donate goods to the French camps.
Sarah Houston, 24, who works with IDSRAP, said: “There’s a lot of young children and what they need is sleeping bags, suitcases and food to carry when on the move.”
“Brexit has created a cloud of uncertainty around the UK that has been fuelled by nationalist rhetoric, creating the idea of refugees as dangerous, uneducated or poor people, and this is not the case.”
Safe Passage UK has identified 387 unaccompanied children who have a legal right to come to the UK and the first wave of Calais minors have now entered.
So far around 200 under 18s have arrived in the UK from Calais.
Caroline Lucas, joint leader of the Green Party and MP for Brighton Pavillion, said “I am deeply concerned about the demolition of the camps.
“There’s evidence when this has happened before, many children have gone missing.”
Ms Lucas said the UK’s government response at the moment is “pretty appalling.”
She continued: “we can do far more, especially when we compare this response to the refugee crisis in WW2, where 10,000 children were rescued from Nazis.”
The demolition of the camps has left no apparent long-term solution for these people.