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Christian Conservative councillor 'unsurprised' by Rwanda ruling and slams 'deplorable' Braverman rhetoric

by Will Hobbs

Christian and Conservative London councillor David Taylor told Premier Christian News he was unsurprised at the court's decision, admitting to concerns he has with the "safeguarding" plans for the people moved to Rwanda.

"What the courts have ruled today is that giving people asylum and helping them settle in a third world country is not in itself illegal or a wrong thing.

But this particular scheme did not have safeguarding in place. And we need to make sure that if we are going to put some of the most vulnerable people in a scheme somewhere like Rwanda, we need to give them all the protections necessary, and all the support they need to build their lives."

Taylor said although he's spoken to residents who identify with the words Braverman used to describe migration, including "a hurricane" and an "invasion", he insists the government, when speaking on behalf of its nation, has a responsibility to speak with compassion.  

"It upset me as a Conservative to be aligned with some of what she was saying. 

"When you're in a position of authority, it's not your job just to say things the way that other people are saying, it's your job to set the tone, it's your job to set the atmosphere and the way forward.

"A lot of very nasty people took the former home secretary's language as being a green light to sort of spout hatred and anger themselves. So I think the Prime Minister has made the right decision in removing the Home Secretary from her post. I think the appointment of James Cleverly in her position is very sensible."

Catholic aid charity CAFOD described the policy as a "cruel attempt to turn away people seeking protection. 

Its Director of Advocacy and Communications Neil Thorn told Premier that it was time the government renewed its approach to the issue. 

"The Prime Minister often talks about resets. Well, here you go, here's an opportunity to actually think about what migrants bring to this country.

"Why those people are fleeing in the first place? And actually, what's our what's our duty? As  in the UK in this, what do we how do we want to be seen in this debate? And actually, we might want to think differently about how we approach those moments, we might want to bring in safe and legal routes”.

Thorns echoed Pope Francis' words that "every migrant has a name, a face and a story to tell", a reality he feels is often been overlooked in recent discourse on the subject. 

He also referenced the climate crisis as an example of how the UK has been itself "responsible, as one of the first industrialised countries" for many having to flee their homes around the globe. 

When asked why YouGov polls indicate 41 per cent of British people were in favour of the Rawanda policy, Thorn referred to "certain aspects of the media" making the conversation "toxic", which, he feels, politicians "feed into".

"If you look at the media in our country, you would think that the vast majority of refugees are coming into our country or coming to Europe. And that is simply not the case, we have a very, very small percentage who come to this country.

"And for the vast majority of those people who do come, they bring a richness to our country. Who hasn't been to the NHS and you haven't been supported by someone who is come from a different country into our place or a care home or they bring a richness?

"It doesn't create for society where actually we do see people as being one single human family, caring for our common brothers and sisters across the world, and actually understanding what the problems that they face in their daily lives and how we've contributed it, and how we can make it better."

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