At the last Scarborough Borough Council full council meeting on Monday, July 2, I was appalled by the decision made by the cabinet and majority party in the chamber. Bear in mind that these decisions are made on behalf of the electorate and with the Scarborough Borough Council logo.
The decision I refer to is to decline to offer refuge and a traditional Yorkshire welcome to up to 20 asylum seekers.
I repeat - 20 individuals.
Furthermore, this request was made by the Government’s Home Office.
It was endorsed by the Westminster Cabinet. Not much to expect.
However, our Tory-led Scarborough Borough Council voted not to accept this simple, humanitarian request.
It was argued that, eventually, these frightened, vulnerable people would become a burden on local services and the local economy.
For instance, they would occupy the housing stock or sleep rough on the streets.
So are we to believe that 20 people can have this devastating impact?
In this part of the country, we rightly claim to be friendly, welcoming and generous.
Although I am not particularly religious, we bill ourselves as living in “God’s Own Country”.
For me, this decision made and carried out on behalf of the 100,000 plus residents of the borough, does not reflect these simple values.
Surely, we need to register our opposition to such mean minded, unethical decision making in our council.
In the end, the pursuit of spreadsheet politics and the balance sheet leaves a moral vacuum.
I urge your readers to express a view.
Certainly, I cannot endorse this sort of decision making. Certainly, the decision makers at Scarborough Borough Council should be urged to think again.
Cllr Rob Barnett