On 5 February 2020 Merton Council became a Borough of Sanctuary.
In response to a motion from Labour councillors, Merton Council voted unanimously that it should declare itself a ‘Borough of Sanctuary’.
The motion stated:
‘Merton is a place that welcomes those from around the world. We value the enormous contributions that refugees and migrants have made, and continue to make to the borough. Declaring Merton to be a “Borough of Sanctuary” would reaffirm Merton’s commitment to the borough’s refugee and migrant communities.
Council calls on cabinet to declare Merton to be a “Borough of Sanctuary”; to continue to work with organisations in the borough who support refugees and asylum seekers in the borough, to work with community groups to harness public support to help and support refugee, migrant and asylum seekers in Merton, and to continue to celebrate the contribution of refugee and migrant communities to Merton and challenge anti-refugee and anti-migrant attitudes wherever they are found.’
The motion was moved by Councillor Macauley (Labour, Lavender Fields) and seconded by Councillor Lanning (Labour, Cricket Green). Councillor Ormrod (Conservative, Trinity) also spoke on this item.
The motion was put to a vote and was carried unanimously.
For more information about what it means to be a Borough of Sanctuary and the City of Sanctuary movement, go to the City of Sanctuary website.