Dickson says it’s important to continue to welcome refugees

Alliance MLA Stewart Dickson has said it is important we continue to be as welcoming a society as possible, as the 1,000th Syrian refugee arrived in Northern Ireland as part of a relocation programme.

A further 78 refugees arrived today as part of the Syrian Vulnerable Persons Relocation Scheme, which has provided sanctuary and support for the establishment of a new life in Northern Ireland for those fleeing the region. It now brings the total to 1,010.

Mr Dickson said it was fitting it took place during Refugee Week.

“Over the past almost three years, we have seen the arrival of many vulnerable people as part of this scheme. Anyone looking at what they have gone through in Syria cannot help but be horrified by the suffering they have endured and the risk they have taken in trying to escape it.

“Unfortunately, given the ongoing humanitarian crisis in Syria, more people will be made homeless and have to escape the ravages of war. Therefore our moral obligation to help will continue.

“It is essential we remain as welcoming as possible to send out a clear message refugees will continue to be welcome here in Northern Ireland. We have a history of helping people in need and that same generosity of spirit needs to continue, to help provide a safe and stable future for refugees.”

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