I stopped by the Covid Memorial Quilt in Parliament on Wednesday to see how it’s coming along. Launched by my colleague Dawn Butler, this quilt is a tapestry of stories from constituencies up and down the country. Streatham’s beautiful entry, from the South London Refugee Association, is a call for migrant justice and an end to No Recourse to Public Funds, which left people from migrant communities destitute during the pandemic and left to rely on charity and a postcode lottery.
Here’s what the quilt patch means in their own words: “it symbolises the importance and beautiful strength of a diverse community and our common fight for justice (read our Women Group Manifesto here). Over lockdown we met every week on ZOOM to share our stories, learn from and support each other. Together, we are fighting for justice for all migrants, asylum-seekers and refugees in the UK. We believe that migrants have so much to contribute to this society, which you can see everywhere you go in Streatham.
“The COVID-19 pandemic has exacerbated difficult situations for many migrant communities and has made all forms of different inequalities in our society more visible. Many of us struggle not being able to access safe housing and public funds due to our immigration status, which is why we ask for the hostile environment, such as the NRPF policy to be ended – so that all migrants can build stable and independent lives and fulfil their full potential.”