WDC rejected questions on Syrian refugees for its Council meeting on Thursday so Councillor Ahmed has sent the Tory Leader a letter to help her report progress. See letter...........
PROGRESS ON SCHEME TO TAKE IN SYRIAN REFUGEES
You may know that I put down a question for the Council meeting on Thursday seeking a progress report from you about resettling Syrian refugees in Wycombe under the Government’s scheme. Unfortunately the question was rejected by Democratic Services on the grounds that it did not comply with standing orders being substantively the same as a question asked by a member of the public three months earlier.
I submitted an alternative question but that was rejected on the same grounds. I submitted a third question which was again rejected.
It seems such a pity that standing orders seem to have denied you the opportunity to present a progress report on the resettlement of Syrian refugees to Full Council. I therefore thought I would send you this open letter and ask the questions to you directly so you can put the answers in the public domain. I attach the questions for your convenience.
I’m sure you would particularly welcome this opportunity as I know James Brokenshire, the Minister for Immigration, is looking to more prosperous areas such as Wycombe to take in refugees. Most refugees are being settled in poorer parts of the north, Wales and Scotland; this is generous and warm-hearted on the part of these communities but they have pointed out that this is putting pressure on areas least able to take the strain.
I note that the Home Office is looking to local authorities to take in one refugee per 200 residents. Based on a population in Wycombe of about 80,000, this would mean about 400 refugees for Wycombe. This is twice as many as Labour Councillors suggested in our motion last year so we were not being over-ambitious.
It would be wonderful if you could respond by Thursday. You would then be able to tell everyone about progress and by-pass the restrictions of standing orders.
Labour Councillor for Disraeli
“Over two months ago, the leader was asked “What substantive work on preparing a refugee resettlement strategy WDC has carried out with the South East Strategic Migration Partnership, Buckinghamshire County Council and other agencies and what progress had been made in the ten weeks since the last Council meeting?” Without repeating the leader’s response, please can the leader tell us if we have made any progress?”
"Over 1200 Syrian refugees have now arrived in the UK under the government's scheme to resettle vulnerable people living in refugees camps. More than 50 local authorities have taken a share. Is Wycombe yet signed up to this scheme and if not, why not?"
“Does the leader think the immigrants from various different countries that are resident in Wycombe today have contributed to the prosperity of Wycombe?”