David Miliband, president of global humanitarian crisis charity, International Rescue Committee, visited Hammersmith & Fulham yesterday to learn about the council’s programmes to keep children safe and its pioneering work rescuing children caught up in the refugee crisis.
Hammersmith & Fulham has one of the best children’s social services departments in the country. It’s also the only council in the country to send its social workers to refugee camps – first in Calais and more recently in Greece – to professionally assess children’s needs and to support their swift transfer to safe havens in the UK.
David Miliband was met by Cllr Stephen Cowan, Leader of H&F, Lord Alf Dubs, Cllr Sue Fennimore, Deputy Leader of H&F, and Sue Macmillan, H&F Cabinet Member for Strategy. They discussed how IRC might coordinate some of its efforts with the borough.
“We believe children have an unalienable right to protection and safety, both here in our borough, and those children caught up in the biggest refugee crisis since the second world war,” said Cllr Cowan.
“We’re deeply proud of our excellent social workers who quietly work day-in, day-out to make that happen.
“We know there are huge challenges in protecting young people. For example, those include deterring gang membership, caring for those suffering domestic violence, as well as honouring Great Britain’s proud heritage of providing safe haven to refugee children.
“The professional dedication of our social workers is at the heart of everything we do on that front which is why we’re investing in them and are making Hammersmith & Fulham the best place to be a social worker anywhere in the country.”
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