September 26: Welcoming Syria refugees raises many issues

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From: Barry Foster, High Stakesby, Whitby.

WHILE most of us have every sympathy with the immigrant situation, a few things do bother me. Why are they not fleeing to other Middle East countries of similar culture and background?

In our own country, we are struggling to maintain an effective National Health Service. Parents cannot get their children into the school of their choice due to overcrowding.

If we have so much money to give away and provide for others, why do we have to have food banks? Something needs drastically sorting.

From: G Oxley, Cromwell Road, Southowram, Halifax.

ON Tuesday, September 15, Leeds City Council announced they were going to close three old people’s homes because of a lack of funding. On Wednesday, September 16, they also announced Leeds would take in 200 refugees.

Are they emptying the old peoples homes to make room? When querying this, I was told the Government was providing funds for the refugees but only for one year. What happens next year when the funding stops?

From: Phil Hanson, Baildon.

I FIND it amazing how quickly the UK government has yielded to taking 20,000 refugees.

These people are going to cost us, the taxpayer, a massive, as yet unpublished amount of cash as well as adding to public services from housing, education and hospitals. David Cameron has written a blank cheque and the stupidity of this is compounded by the clowns who run our councils who don’t expect to foot the bill after year one!

What Cameron and the councils fail to acknowledge or respect is that the people who are paying are the very same people who have had years of austerity and still face the prospect of steadily declining living standards and council services.

Seeing refugees and economic migrants being housed and welcomed in a depressed city like Bradford is ridiculous. The city has been held back by a disproportionate number of immigrants who have failed to integrate, so how can the added burden of the latest immigrants not have a negative impact on this long-depressed city?

Countries such as Saudi Arabia and the UAE have masses of wealth. Surely the time has come for them to look after their Islamic brothers?

From: Coun Nick Allen (Conservative), Doncaster.

THE recent arrival of Syrian refugees in the UK demonstrates the seriousness of this crisis. We must do all we can to support their plight. Our Government has already taken a lead as it has helped support and finance refugee camps. The small number of refugees who have arrived under the Syrian Vulnerable Persons scheme is testament to our willingness to give support. We have done this before. We gave shelter to thousands of people who moved to Britain after fleeing tyranny in the 1930s and 40s.

The SVP has been expanded and will be implemented in stages. Nearly 20,000 of the most vulnerable refugees will be allowed to enter the UK over the course of this Parliament. This is a pragmatic approach which has linked the needs of refugees to our ability to care and accommodate them safely and securely. To this end the Home Office is working closely with local authorities to make sure we are able to welcome refugees.

In Doncaster the elected Mayor, Ros Jones, has outlined her desire for the town to assist refugees. It was a very courageous statement for her to make at this time, because there have been problems in Doncaster with fascist groups and racist people. I am still shocked some residents have not understood this crisis or our need to respond. For Ros Jones, the public face of Doncaster’s ruling Labour Party, to stand up to these people in her own backyard was breathtaking and almost revolutionary.

From: Dave Croucher, Doncaster.

THE amount of refugees crossing the Mediterranean Sea is unending. It appears that the penny has finally dropped in Angela Merkel’s head, the Germans are crying “close the borders”. It didn’t take long for her to come to the conclusion that we Brits have been telling her for the past few years.

How come we are the only country in Europe that is not listened to and the only one that sticks to the EU’s stupid rules?

From: Rachel Bewley, Guiseley.

YOU couldn’t make it up. Leeds Council says it will take in refugee families – and then accuses the Government of not giving the authority the money to do so. Why don’t the officials think before they speak? The city does not have a bottomless pit of money.

Stars of future schooled here

From: H M Heaton, Bodfari, Denbigh.

JUST thought that this photo of Aireborough Grammar School Cricket 1st XI in 1948 might interest you. It shows two future Yorkshire players – Brian Stott sitting on the left of Brian Close. Also back row second from the right is the youngest of the three Claughtons who played for the Yorkshire Colts’. The school also produced Hedley Verity as you know, and Ken Taylor another Yorkshire player. Not to mention Nigel Melville England Rugby Union Captain and now heading the USA Rugby effort! Quite a school. I was head boy of Aireborough Grammar in 1947-48 and Brian Close was a prefect.