Support for Ukraine is coming from many quarters. Throughout Harrogate there have been a number of groups making collections of essential items, and facilitating transportation.
Harrogate Borough Council is also providing support, and it has undertaken the following:
- HBC housing team have been asked to identify available properties so that they can react quickly to provide accommodation for refugees, as they did for Syrian and Afghan refugees.
- The government has made it clear that refugees will have access to public funds and the HBC benefits team are ready to assist.
- They are working with Jenny Travena, a former independent councillor, who is working with the Harrogate District of Sanctuary to coordinate our efforts when refugees arrive
- Taking part in the government’s matching scheme to provide suitable accommodation with individuals and families fleeing the war when the final arrangements for it are announced.
- Determined that theye no contracts with Russian companies nor investments with them.
- Cancelled performances at the Rotyal Hall from Russian linked companies.
- Shown our solidarity with the people of Ukraine by hoisting their flag at the Civic Centre and the War Memorial.
Richard Cooper, Leader of Harrogate Borough Council, said:
This is a humanitarian crisis and we need to do all we can to support refugees. There is clearly a national dimension and the government need to pull their collective finger out and get the visa situation sorted rapidly.
Locally we need to be ready to help at a council level and at a community level. That is why we are committed to providing suitable housing, benefits support and backing those community groups who have done such a fantastic job with the Syrian and Afghan refugees – more of whom are being resettled here shortly.
We have taken other measures and I know that the county council are doing so too. It is a terrible situation and we need to do what we can.