Published: Thursday, 8th June 2023

We are one step closer to becoming a Borough of Sanctuary, after launching a new policy to support refugees, migrants and asylum seekers.

We have been working towards becoming a Borough of Sanctuary since a motion was passed by all cross-party councillors in 2021. The launch of the policy is the final step in this process. 

The policy sets out the Council’s commitment to supporting refugees, migrants and asylum seekers and provides a framework for people who make Royal Greenwich their home. 

Denise Scott-McDonald, Cabinet Member for Health and Adult Services said: “We want to make sure that Royal Greenwich is inclusive and welcoming, that we are meeting people’s specific needs, and that we listen to and amplify the voices of refugees, asylum seekers and migrants. 

“This policy sets out the commitments the Council is making in order to become a Borough of Sanctuary. It provides a common understanding of the meaning of sanctuary, acts as a policy anchor for the wide variety of work the Council will undertake, and offers a framework for delivery.” 

The Council will be making changes across all directorates and departments so we can achieve our goal. We’ll be looking at our policies and procedures, while working closely with local partners and organisations to make sure our services are accessible. We’ll also be identifying national policy issues where we can work collectively to encourage and enable change.  

Cllr Scott-McDonald added: “As the government continues to ramp up hostility towards refugees, asylum seekers and migrants, we must continue to fight back. Councils across the country will have a key role to play in standing up for and protecting people’s rights.” 

Take a look at the full policy