Source: Guardian Unlimited
The Guardian reports today on a new Church of England report that calls for its church-goers to offer hospitality to refugees and asylum seekers and to help campaign on their behalf.
A report, A Place of Refuge, was put together following a request of the general synod. Among general advice on tolerance, it also suggested that Church of England followers should consider allowing asylum seekers to stay in their homes overnight if they were short of accommodation.
The report, as quoted in the Guardian, said: “The UK churches have an inescapable duty to stand alongside asylum seekers and refugees. The problems they face and the negative attitudes they encounter must be challenged through prayer and action . . . those who initially arrive in need will contribute much to the UK – economically, socially, culturally, spiritually and personally and, as we hope to receive, we should continue to give.”
The report refers to a submission by the Refugee Council to the Commons Work and Pensions Select Committee in December 2003 which revealed that 56% of asylum seekers have a qualification, a third to degree level and that 65% speak at least two languages.
The report also quoted the Refugee Council submission saying that it had registered 920 doctors, 150 nurses and more than 100 dentists among refugees that year. It estimates that refugees contributed £2.6bn to the Treasury in 2000, 10 times more than was given in support.
For the full Guardian story, go to Help refugees, churchgoers told
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