We need to show compassion

lawand-hamadamin_892221_midLawand Hamadamin is a deaf six year old Iraqui boy who with his family was admitted to the UK from a refugee camp in Dunkirk. Lawand was born profoundly deaf, and due to problems with his cochlear implant following his harrowing journey from a warzone we had created, was completely unable to communicate. However thanks to a charity called DeafKidz International he and his family were brought to Derby so that Lawand could attend the Royal School for the Deaf Derby, where he has learned to communicate via British Sign Language. There is more information in this article. His family which comprises his Mother and Father and a nine year old Brother Rawa. On Monday they will be informed by the Home Office if they can remain in the country or if they will be deported to Germany. They fled Iraq because as a disabled child, Lawand was threatened with murder by Daesh or Isis. They first arrived in Europe in Greece and also travelled into Germany before travelling to France and finally being brought to the UK. Our track record as a country in receiving refugees is not a very good one, but clearly Lawand and his family have benefited enormously from being here. The idea that we should force the family to once again become refugees may be consistent with the rules and regulations that successive Governments have created, but will be deeply damaging to Lawands education. The Head Teacher at the School, Helen Shepherd explained:

“Lawand’s family are understandably devastated that they are being deported, especially since he has made such extraordinary progress in the few months he has been with us. When Lawand arrived at the school in September, he had no means of communicating with anyone – even his own family. “In the very short time he has been with us, Lawand has made exceptional progress. He is signing incredibly well and we have been so proud of him – he has made good friends, has grown in confidence and exceeded all our expectations. “It is inconceivable that he should be removed from the school when he has only just begun. Lawand’s cochlear implant processor has broken and so he has no functioning hearing aid yet. He has an appointment this week so that he can get a referral to the Nottingham cochlear implant centre. There is little chance that he will get that appointment before the New Year, by which time he could have gone.”

All the Home Office spokeswoman could say is that it was “fair” the UK should honour international rules agreed between EU countries that asylum seekers should settle in the first country they enter. I imagine the same spokeswomen would not argue the same if it was her deaf child about to be sent away from a good quality deaf school into a refugee camp. I believe we need to go beyond Fairness in a case like this one and act in a way that shows that we are prepared to do more than drop bombs on other lands.

About ianchisnall

I am passionate about the need for public policies to be made accessible to everyone, especially those who want to improve the wellbeing of their communities. I am particularly interested in issues related to crime and policing as well as health services and strategic planning.
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