Laura Sharman 04 September 2015

Councils calls for Whitehall to fully-fund refugee support

Town hall chiefs have warned that Whitehall must fully cover the cost of helping extra refugees, after prime minister David Cameron pledged asylum for thousands of people fleeing Syria yesterday.

The Local Government Association (LGA) said the level of any extra resources provided for refugees should be decided by individual councils.

‘Any support offered by councils must be on a voluntary basis where support can be adequately provided,’ said Cllr David Simmonds, chairman of the LGA’s Asylum, Migration and Refugee Task Group.

‘However, central government has to recognise that any costs associated with this international problem must be fully met by Whitehall.’

Speaking on behalf of councils in Scotland, a spokesperson for COSLA said local government ‘stands ready and willing to play our part in responding to this humanitarian crisis’.

However, they also warned that the scale of the crisis meant councils would need financial support from national governments to help respond effectively.

Labour leadership contender Yvette Cooper said earlier this week the UK could support an extra 10,000 refugees a year.

Photo: thomas koch/Shutterstock.com

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