Council pledges support for Afghan refugees

Cherwell District Council is ready and willing to join partners across the county and the rest of the nation to find accommodation for people who are fleeing Afghanistan.

Published: Friday, 20th August 2021

Cherwell District Council is ready and willing to join partners across the county and the rest of the nation to find accommodation for people who are fleeing Afghanistan after recent events in the country.

The council is already focusing on sourcing accommodation and identifying empty housing stock suitable for rehousing families and is in discussions with the Ministry of Defence about the possibility of repurposing some of its property for this purpose.

Councillor Barry Wood, the leader of Cherwell District Council, said: “We are keen and eager for north Oxfordshire to be part of the national effort to help support the refugees from Afghanistan and we are working with central government and partners across the county to do everything possible.

“Once suitable accommodation has been secured, we will work with partners to put in place a wraparound support package for families, which encompasses access to healthcare and education and support with employment and community integration.

“The rapidly escalating situation in Afghanistan requires us to work at pace. However, at the same time we want to ensure that our decisions and actions are taken in an organised and measured way so that the resettlement support we provide is both considered and robust. 

“The residents of north Oxfordshire are generous and hospitable and it has come as no surprise to us that local people are already making offers of assistance and organisations are ready and willing to help.

“Like many councils we have strong previous experience in this area, having supported Syrian refugees who sadly had to leave their home country. We will be drawing on that experience as we prepare to welcome people who have had to leave their homes because of what is happening in Afghanistan.”