Labour rosette
The chairman of the local Labour party has backed a petition calling on Lichfield District Council to offer housing to 10 refugee families. The campaign has been criticised by UKIP county councillor Jeff Sheriff and Lichfield District Council representative John Mills. But Lichfield Labour chairman Colin Ball says the duo’s views show their party’s true colours. He said: “Those are the kind of comments I would expect from UKIP as they just don’t care about people. “I would support the petition, it is a great idea and it would be fantastic if we could bring 10 families into Lichfield. “I think members of the public are starting to realise that we need to get behind and support these people. “But the Government needs to ensure there is proper funding in place, so we can support them.” The Government is preparing to accept at least 10,000 displaced people into Britain, according to reports. Chancellor George Osborne has announced some of the United Kingdom’s £12 billion Foreign Aid budget will be used to help local authorities house refugees. Cllr Colin Greatorex, Cabinet member for housing and health at Lichfield District Council, said the authority is ready to play its part. He added: “We have been told by the Home Office that they are exploring options of how to disperse refugees across the country. “We believe other councils in Staffordshire have also been contacted. “Whilst we don’t have any council housing, we will work with our housing association partners and other partners to provide support and assistance as required.”

Lewis Deakin

NCTJ-trained reporter with experience in a wide variety of journalism settings.

4 replies on “Local Labour chairman backs call for Lichfield and Burntwood to take in refugees”

  1. Those caught up on a wave of emotion wanting the UK to accomodate all these economic migrants have been somewhat tongue-tied over the last week or so.
    Maybe they’ve been watching the news?

  2. All very well, but how about housing 10 local families first. There are plenty out there who find themselves homeless, sofa-surfing or living in overcrowded conditions who stand no chance of ever having a home of their own because there are apparently no homes available. So pray do tell how you Mr Ball are going to find 10 homes or are you going to put them into overpriced private rented accommodation and the tax-payer is going to foot the bill?

  3. Ann – Couldn’t agree more
    There is an absolute consensus across people of all political persuasions that the UK has an exceptionally serious housing crisis both in terms of social and private housing.
    The Guardian has even described it as an ‘Accelerating human disaster’
    The UK is currently building around 120,000 homes SHORT of the (at least) 250,000 per year which has been recommended is needed in order to just keep up with demand. Young people and families are beginning to be priced out of areas that they grew up in because of this crisis. Nowhere is this more apparent than in Lichfield which has recently topped a survey by Rural Housing Week in terms of areas which will see the largest increase in over 65s ownership as a proportion over the next 7 years.

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