Faiths4Change, Stars, Student Action for Refugee and their J&P supporters took part in a Circle of Silence on Saturday 9 April in the heart of Liverpool city centre. They gathered for an hour with their mouths taped to protest in silence against the treatment that Asylum Seekers receive in Britain.
According to the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, ‘All human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights…Everyone has the right to life, liberty and security of person.’ However, some people who live in our midst experience every day how these human rights are taken away from them because they are Asylum Seekers!
Chas Raws, the Chair of Asylum Link Merseyside, commented: "A silent vigil is an appropriate form of protest on behalf of people who have been silenced and marginalized by our asylum system. Prohibited from working and then accused of being scroungers, disbelieved when recounting their tragic experiences and then denied asylum because of this disbelief, it is no wonder that a majority of them suffer varying degrees of depression and mental illness. Any expression of solidarity is worth a lot to those whom our system has failed."
Claudia Coussins of Student Action for Refugee added: "Asylum seekers and refugees in the UK have fled persecution. Instead of being welcomed and supported, they are unfairly stigmatized and met with hostility. We would like to help them lead a life of dignity and respect. Our peaceful and silent protest was a small way for us to show our solidarity"
The event was organised by Robert Ritter, a JVC member in Liverpool, who works withFaiths4Change.
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