— Lady Jane \ud83c\uddfa\ud83c\udde6 (@Lady Jane \ud83c\uddfa\ud83c\udde6)
James be thankful its not you fleeing a war zone.\n\nYes I\u2019m a remainer, but I also have empathy, something you seem to lacking.\n\n#SlavaUkraini https://twitter.com/haggis_uk/status/1502911421218275331\u00a0\u2026
— \ud83c\uddec\ud83c\udde7 \ud83c\uddea\ud83c\uddfaKevin Wilson \ud83c\uddea\ud83c\uddfa \ud83c\uddec\ud83c\udde7 \ud83c\uddfa\ud83c\udde6\ud83c\udf3b\ud83d\ude4f\ud83c\udf3b\ud83c\uddfa\ud83c\udde6 (@\ud83c\uddec\ud83c\udde7 \ud83c\uddea\ud83c\uddfaKevin Wilson \ud83c\uddea\ud83c\uddfa \ud83c\uddec\ud83c\udde7 \ud83c\uddfa\ud83c\udde6\ud83c\udf3b\ud83d\ude4f\ud83c\udf3b\ud83c\uddfa\ud83c\udde6)
Levelling Up Secretary Michael Gove has said the process of matching Britons with people fleeing the conflict will take place from Friday, while he expects the first refugees to use the new route will make their way to the UK by the end of the week.
The government has faced criticism for its response to the crisis, however, with London Mayor Sadiq Khan this morning calling the UK’s response to the refugee crisis “embarrassing” compared to other countries.
He told Good Morning Britain that the visa system must be simplified as it is “far too complicated for those from Ukraine to come to London, and our country”.
He added: “Councils are ready to step up, hotels are ready to step up, businesses are ready to step up, Londoners are ready to step up.
“The issue now is the delay in the visas but also we need to make sure there’s the right support, the wrap-around care.
“Many of these people will be traumatised, they need medical support. The children will need spaces in schools. We need to make sure English is available to those who can’t speak English. We need to make sure they can work straight away, those with the skills.
“With the right support, with the visas being sorted out, we should be able to do at least what Germany and France and Italy and Spain and others have been doing. It’s embarrassing when you compare what little we’ve done with most of what our neighbours have done.”
The Independent has a proud history of campaigning for the rights of the most vulnerable, and we first ran our Refugees Welcome campaign during the war in Syria in 2015. Now, as we renew our campaign and launch this petition in the wake of the unfolding Ukrainian crisis, we are calling on the government to go further and faster to ensure help is delivered.
To find out more about our Refugees Welcome campaign, click here.