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Refugees Welcome march in Cambridge

#RefugeesWelcome demonstration in Cambridge 10 October 2015

ON SATURDAY 10th October, Cambridge Stop The War coalition called a #RefugeesWelcome demonstration, which was attended by about 300 people.

Ever since the appalling pictures of baby Aylan being washed ashore we have had an increase in the willingness of families to engage in events to show their solidarity with people fleeing bombing and destruction of their homes and communities. A visible presence on the streets has also helped to counteract the negative news coverage of “swarms” of young men trying to sneak into the UK for an easy life. As my cab driver said, “I'm not against the ones that have suffered but it's the ones that have walked across Europe and refused to stay in Germany or Hungary but are trying to get in here because they know they'll have an easy life.” She encouraged our government using the Australian system to process those clamouring at our doors! A system I assured her was racist and has no place in Europe or indeed in Australia itself.

Our presence was definitely welcome and people were eager to converse, take leaflets about our campaign and to donate money. Tying this in with our recent stall at Fresher's Fair at Cambridge University, we were able to draw upon the student community to lend support to our demo. Shulamit Morris-Evans from the group Student Action For Refugees (CU STAR) urged people to sign petitions for refugees equal access to education and end to detention centres.

Labour MP Daniel Zeichner expressed how inspiring the efforts of ordinary people has been in response to the humanitarian crisis in Calais and across European refugee camps. But he urged our government to do far more in accepting refugees.

The demonstration then marched from Parker's Piece to Market Square where speakers from Trades Council, Stand Up To Racism and London2Calais all reiterated the Stop The War message that the bombing of Syria has to stop. Our UK government must do more to provide help for refugees rather than be responsible for creating new ones.

Source: Cambridge Stop the War