Derbyshire will take in Syrian refugees

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Syrian refugees will be arriving in Derbyshire from November.

Derbyshire County Council’s cabinet voted at a meeting on Tuesday to re-home 50 Syrians, mostly families, across the county.

Cabinet member for health and communities, Councillor Dave Allen, said: “I am pleased we’re doing something. It may only be a small amount, but we are helping.

“It is easy to get blasé about what we see on the TV, but horrific things have happened to these people.

“I wish those who are coming here a smooth transition into their new Derbyshire life.”

The intake is part of central government plans to re-home 20,000 Syrian refugees across the country. The government will donate £20,000 over five years to the local authority for each re-homed refugee.

The council has joined up with district and borough councils, health colleagues, police, voluntary and community groups and other agencies to form a partnership group in response to the plans, announced last September.

Cllr Allen said: “We believe supporting refugees who face death and suffering on an unimaginable scale every day is the right thing to do.”

A Syrian Vulnerable Persons Resettlement Scheme (VPRS) for Derbyshire is now in place and the county council is currently recruiting a temporary VPRS Derbyshire resettlement coordinator and project support officer to manage the scheme.

Work has been carried out to map the locations of potential housing against the availability of local resources such as GP and school places.

This helped determine the offer Derbyshire made to the Government about how many refugees it would have the capacity to welcome.

Cllr Allen said: “This process has taken careful and detailed planning which is why we have set up a resettlement group taking a carefully planned, countywide partnership approach.

“Many other UK councils have already pledged their support and like them, we’re keen to do what we can to help.”

For more information about the Syrian refugee resettlement scheme in Derbyshire, visit www.derbyshire.gov.uk/refugees.