EDP Ukraine mercy mission raised in parliament by MP

The EDP's mercy mission to Ukraine was raised in parliament by Norwich South MP Clive Lewis this afternoon. 

The EDP's mercy mission to Ukraine was raised in parliament by Norwich South MP Clive Lewis this afternoon. - Credit: David Powles/PA Wire

The EDP's mercy mission to Ukraine was raised in parliament amid calls for more to be done for refugees trying to reach the UK.

During representations at the treasury committee meeting in the House of Commons on Wednesday, March 30, Clive Lewis, MP for Norwich South, asked for guidance from deputy speaker Dame Eleanor Laing.  

Norwich South MP Clive Lewis raised the EDP's Ukraine mercy mission in parliament.

Norwich South MP Clive Lewis raised the EDP's Ukraine mercy mission in parliament. - Credit: BBC iPlayer

He raised his concerns about the “plight of refugees currently languishing on the Ukrainian, Polish border”. 

Mr Lewis said: “David Powles, the editor of my local newspaper, is on the ground there and has stated that the government Homes for Ukraine's scheme is failing by every metric possible.  

“Despite hundreds of people across Norwich and Norfolk volunteering to take refugees into their own homes, a lack of coordination, communication over complication and technical delays means whilst 80 families have been matched not one has been accepted into the UK. 

“Home Office support on the ground is also non-existent. What support there is, is coming from small charities and individuals struggling with numbers they are dealing with. 

“Can you advise me madam deputy speaker how I may bring this tragic situation to the government’s attention.” 

(L-R) David Powles, Richard Knight, Adam Hale-Sutton have met Ukranian mother-of-one Vita who has fl

(L-R) David Powles, Richard Knight, Adam Hale-Sutton have met Ukranian mother-of-one Vita who has fled the fighting in Kyiv. - Credit: Archant

Reporting directly from the Polish border on Wednesday, March 30, Mr Powles said the scheme to house refugees is failing.  

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He wrote: “Charities working in Poland on the border with Ukraine, have told how ineffective the scheme has been amid a lack of communication from the government, an all-too complicated process, and even technical delays. 

“They say that while other countries are bussing out scores of people every day, so far the UK has failed to rehome anyone arriving in Medyka in the past seven days.”  

The crossing point between Ukraine and Poland.

The crossing point between Ukraine and Poland. - Credit: Archant

Responding to Mr Lewis’s request for guidance on this matter, Ms Laing said: “I'm sure that ministers are not trying to delay, they are trying to give members as much information and as much advice as possible and as soon as possible.

“There will be a way in which the honourable gentleman can get that advice. The treasury bench have heard the honourable gentleman's point and it will be treated with sympathy."