Home News Uncategorised Official Statement on Kiln Court by Faversham Town Council

Official Statement on Kiln Court by Faversham Town Council

Statement from Faversham Town Council

Faversham has a long and proud history of welcoming refugees from all over the world.

Following a decision by the High Court, requiring the Home Office & Kent County Council to improve the living conditions, and safeguarding of separated asylum seeker children, Kent County Council announced in February its intention to use the former Kiln Court care home on Lower Road as a reception centre.

Faversham Town Council recognises that Kent County Council has a legal and moral responsibility to look after separated asylum seeker children, and as the owner of Kiln Court they are entitled to use it for this purpose without seeking planning permission.

We are disappointed by the failure of Kent County Council and The Home Office to consult with the community and key stakeholders earlier in the process. The Council also believes that communications from Kent County Council, that have been sent to nearby residents, have been poor and sent to far too few of Kiln Court’s neighbours. We welcome progress that is currently being made on this.

The Town Council, has for some time, been working towards becoming a “council of sanctuary”. This national project looks to create and support networks of welcome in every sector to encourage inclusivity, solidarity, and compassion for people from forced displacement backgrounds. We believe that children who have fled violence and persecution should be placed with foster families as quickly as possible so that they are able to continue with their lives in stable, healing and supportive environments and that Kiln Court is not a perfect solution for these children. As a community we can come together to make sure that the small amount of time that they are living in Faversham is as positive as possible.

We recognise that these proposed changes have caused some concerns for some residents and have tasked our Campaign Committee to work alongside our partners across local Government, Kent Police, and local community organisations, towards a strategy to maintain community cohesion, help to ease concerns and answer questions which residents might have.

We will also actively work to combat the spread of inaccurate and false information, which seeks to stoke fear and division. As with any debate on all issues that we face together as a community, abusive, threatening, inflammatory and bullying behaviour towards any member of our community, including elected Councillors and members of Town Council Staff, will be reported to the appropriate authorities. There is no place for racist and xenophobic language in our community and wherever we come from, we all have the right to feel safe.

2 May 2024
Last Updated
2 May 2024
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