Five parlimentary candidates reveal their support for Ottery refugee group pledges

Candidates Hugo Swire, Claire Wright, Peter Faithfull, Jan Ross and Alison Eden all responded to Ott

Candidates Hugo Swire, Claire Wright, Peter Faithfull, Jan Ross and Alison Eden all responded to Ottery Refugee Response Group's letter. - Credit: Archant

An Ottery group has received pledges of support from parliamentary candidates to support refugees in East Devon.

Ottery Refugee Response Group wrote to would-be MPs asking them to work with them on their four objectives if they were elected next week.

Among the pledges candidates were asked if they would work to increase the district council’s target to resettle refugees in East Devon to 20 within the next parliament.

Liberal Democrat candidate Alison Eden said as a country there was a ‘moral duty’ to support those fleeing conflict and famine.

She said: “I was moved and impressed by the efforts your group has made within the East Devon constituency.

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“I fully support the work being done by dedicated groups across the constituency, county and wider country in supporting and campaigning on behalf of Syrian and other refugee groups. If elected I will be more than happy to work with your group to help create a safe and welcoming future for refugees.”

Jan Ross (Labour) pledged her support and praised the group for keeping the issue ‘to the forefront’ in East Devon.

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She added: “If the UK is going to be involved in conflicts anywhere in the world it must also play a full part in the aftermath and all those people fleeing war and devastation.”

Independent candidates Claire Wright and Peter Faithfull also said they would support the pledges with Mr Faithfull adding he would amend one proposal to address Devon County Council.

Conservative candidate Sir Hugo Swire said he did not sign pledges as a matter of principle but offered to meet the group if he was re-elected.

Candidates Brigitte Graham (UKIP) and Michael Val Davies (Independent) had yet to comment as the Herald went to press yesterday (Thursday).

Trevor Leahong, from the group, said: “The group thanks the five candidates who have replied, all of whom expressed their willingness to work with us should they be elected.

“The group will seek to work constructively with whoever is elected to fulfil the pledge.”

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