Posts Tagged ‘immigration’


Local protest planned

The local group is planning a short demonstration against the visit by Donald Trump to the UK.  It will take place in the market square on 13 July starting at 11am for an hour.  The purpose is to highlight his attitude towards immigrants and the decision to withdraw the USA from the Human Rights Council.

Readers are welcome to join us.

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Last week’s events were dominated by the mounting scandal of the Windrush generation and how they were treated by the Home Office.  It ended with the resignation of the Home Secretary Amber Rudd following her various lapses concerning the policy of targets for removals.  The policy – set in place by her predecessor as Home Secretary, Theresa May – was an avowedly aggressive one and as we have seen in Salisbury, catches out all manner of people.

Last year, the acting group Ice and Fire performed for us at Sarum College using testimonies of people who had worked for the Border Agency.  A disgraceful element of their performance was the use of a toy monkey which was placed on an officer’s desk if he or she allowed someone to stay in the country.

A fuller description of their performance can be accessed here as it seems timely to reprise the post.  We hope you will take time to read it.


Group hosts a showing of refugee film Fire at Sea

On Friday 3rd February the group hosted a showing of the film Fire at Sea in the Arts Centre in Salisbury.  This film won the Golden Bear award at the Berlin film festival and tells the story of immigrants seeking to reach Europe, in this case the island of Lampedusa.  There are in effect two parallel story lines: one involving a small boy of around 12 who spends his time, with a friend, making and shooting a catapult and on his father’s fishing boat.  The other involves the immigrants packed onto boats bobbing about for days in the Mediterranean in their desperate efforts to reach Europe.  Some die of dehydration and others get burned by diesel fuel splashes as they refill the engines.  These burns can be serious and even fatal.  There are harrowing scenes of bodies being retrieved from the boats.

Picture: Spindle magazine

The feature of the film is that the two stories never overlap.  The islanders carry on their lives completely divorced from the drama that is taking place in the sea around them and in the holding centre where the immigrants are looked after.  The doctor is featured who is involved with vetting the immigrants and speaks matter of factly about the dire state of their health and how some of them die.  He is then shown treating the boy who is concerned about his breathing difficulty, which we are led to believe is imaginary.  These two contrasting scenes seem to sum up the theme of the film.

We took the opportunity to ask people to sign a petition on the refugee situation in Greece.

We are grateful to the Arts Centre for hosting this event.


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Tonight!

The problems of Syria and people fleeing that country are seldom out of the news these days and indeed, the issue of immigration – and immigrants from Syria are part of the problem – is high up on the agenda with the debate about Brexit or Remain in the European Union.  Many people are responding in interviews that the reason they want us to leave is to stop the flow of refugees and immigrants coming to the UK.

All the talk about ‘immigrants’ can sometimes cloud the fact that these are people we are talking about and people means children as well.  Children who may have witnessed terrible events and even have lost parents in the conflict.

So a talk being organised by the Romsey group of AI is timely.  They have invited someone from Firefly International to give a talk on Monday 20 June starting at 19:45.  It will be about the conditions in Southern Turkey and their projects for children in that area.  It will be in Abbey Hall, Romsey, SO15 8EL.

All welcome.