Cardinal Vincent Nichols has joined calls for the international community to urgently address the migration crisis, as world leaders gather in New York for Monday’s United Nations Summit.
The UN Summit on 19 September is an opportunity for the international community to address migration-related crises around the world. Over 280,000 migrants have crossed the Mediterranean so far this year – tragically more than 3,000 have died trying.
Cardinal Nichols has called for international co-operation to help create the conditions so people don’t feel compelled to migrate in the first place – and to prioritise family unity by ensuring they are not forced to become economic migrants.
People needed access to the economic, political and social opportunities to live in freedom and dignity so they are able to flourish.
“This is a crisis that demands an urgent response from the international community,” said Cardinal Nichols.
“We need to look at what drives people from their homes. The international community needs to co-ordinate registration and welcome. The victims of this lack of co-ordination are the very people who have been forced to leave home and are in desperate circumstances.
“I believe that people in this country are instinctively generous and through the community sponsorship scheme, led by Churches and faith groups, pathways to ensure this generosity is channelled in the most helpful way are being established. And so refugees and migrants can be welcomed into our communities.
“We pray that this Summit – one of the most important in recent years – bears fruit for all of these people who need our help.”
On Saturday, 17 September there will be a refugees welcome march through the centre of London, supported by CSAN and CAFOD, agencies of the Bishops’ Conference of England and Wales.