A Christian Brother from Salford has pleaded for an increase in support for asylum seekers, to mark the anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.
The Declaration, signed on December 10th 1948 at the General Assembly of the United Nations, consists of 30 Articles which set out a common standard of achievements for all peoples and all nations, as well as fundamental human rights to be universally preserved and protected. Today, like the rest of the world, Salford celebrates these rights.
Brother Ger O’Connell, who is based at St Sebastian’s Parish in Lower Broughton, believes that many refugees and asylum seekers feel welcome in Salford but insists that society could be doing more to help.
“There is quite an amount of negativity from the media, and misunderstanding,” he noted. “We need to be informing people that these people are not here taking our jobs, taking out money; these people would give anything to be back with their families.”
He underlined the role of Salford Edmund Rice Volunteers (SERV) and the work that they do to support and advocate human rights in Salford.
“We work with asylum seekers and refugees, and we try to advise them on their rights in this country. We try and help them to access the various services like universal credit and financial services.
“If some of them are failed asylum seekers, we try to help them with their appeal.”
Since the introduction of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, Britain has continued to adopt laws and codes to protect the rights of all. Some of these can be seen in the timeline below.
You can listen to the full interview with Ger here: