Thanks again for your amazing support and donations. And sorry my last couple of updates were a bit demented: I was trying to further the campaign with 9 lawyers and 6 social worker colleagues that i invited out here (more below) and shoot with a new crew, and were doing day and night shoots. Update from camp is that last Tues evening the CRS in riot shields came into camp (we filmed it) and hammered notices Nazi style on doors of all tiny shops and cafes (which are ESSENTIAL for everyone- batteries, SIM cards, basic food if people have money to buy, eg 30 cent home made naan bread ) saying in 5 pages of legalese French that all of them must close in 48 hours. So French Govt starving people out. We suspected there would be a big protest after that so stayed through the night- sure enough desperate attempts by hundreds to get up to the UK road, repelled by about 14 CRS vans with tear gas and batons and riot shields. . (All paid for by us, dear reader, under UK-France le Touquet deal where the French do UK dirty work. Gassing children on our tax dollar. Nice. ….I have pic of 12 year old after being gassed. Horrible. ) . So hence a lot going on.
Now had a couple days back in UK to recoup and to chase the UK end of the story. As well as our film, and that I managed to get the story twice on ITN from Calais and interviewed by Sky News, I also got some UK documents leaked which were ITN main story last Weds 6.30pm and second main story Weds 10pm news. (you can google my name and calais and those will i hope come up ) Basically saying that Home Office are so under-prepared that they are appealing to charities and untrained volunteers to help. Clearly if the publicity hadn’t started this would never have reached the news. Now HO are on the back foot. They had a year to process Calais kids cases and did nothing at all. While they did nothing, many suffered and two died. I have evidence which Im putting out on ITN next week that the HO insistence that there are no places in UK for these kids is completely untrue- foster parents are ready and prepped to received them. Foster agencies say Its the cost and the fact HO may look ‘soft” that is the only prohibitor.
Now back in camp which is a sorry place. The numbers dropping all the time,, not in a good way. NUMBERS: The French say they can rehouse when numbers drop from 10,000 to 7000- academics among us, please lets write about the NUMBERS game.. Its inhuman. I still can’t believe on Monday 24th (TWO DAYS- EEK) they will raze the entire camp and neatly get 7000 people including nearly 1000 minors onto busses and disperse them across France . (Though our hotel here is entirely booked out with gendarmes from elsewhere all staying here so maybe they will) . Monday will be a very big day.
THE PROBLEM IS THERE ARE est. 1000 kids. 387 were named 6 weeks ago by one group Safe Passage. . I have have found 116 more, and will find more this weekend. Another group has found over 100. But HO refuses to acknowledge more than the 387. It is defined that at least 400 have the legal right to come to UK under EU Dublin 3 clause, and we are doing an emergency appeal to take the rest under Dubs Amendment. PLEASE WRITE TO YOUR MP and anyone else NOW demanding that the HO take the time (they’ve had a year and did nothing) to register and properly and humanely assess the 1000 kids, not just send a handful to UK for photo-ops and starve out the rest. Please anyone who knows JeremCorbyn speak to him as he is fully on board with this.
(Speaking of photo ops, the much disputed ‘older kid’ in the Sun etc was the 40- year old interpreter… )
More numbers… As this is a campaign not only a film, you will be pleased to know that as well as the 387 children Safe Passage identified in the last months I have been able to locate and identify a further 116 (and expect to find more this weekend. ) Of these 116, because I have been lucky enough to get Duncan Lewis solicitors involved (And they’ve been here in force, young amazing team signing up my finds asap), then amazing support from Social Workers without Borders, also sending team soy volunteer professional soc workers, everyone doing it at own cost) we have been able to sign up and have social worker assessed, for Best Interests, 42 clients and 30 of these are already in to the Home Office as emergency appeals. If they are not accepted we will pursue further legal action.
Problem is the Safe Passage list , great though it was, was seen as a definitive list and the govt very happy to address only it and do a numbers deal – eg they say 300 would be ‘a nice number” and this ignores the fact that there are 700 more, with a VERY STRONG LEGAL CASE to come to Uk (see my prior emails on this.) Its not charity, its not a nice number, ts the HO blatantly ignoring minors who have a strong case to be here under Dubs and Dublin 3, leaving them in cold tents with no food or power, no-one registering their names, and no process at all until last week.
I know where more of the kids are then the HO does. This is not right. I can only do so much by Monday when the camp s et to close. Only about 1/3 of the kids have mobiles. Many will be lost who had the legal right to be here. remember Calais is not an official camp Its literally about a a 100 young volunteers, mainly untrained, and no infrastructure AT ALL. And now about 15 film crews who are just headline grabbing and ignoring this key story.
I hope we will have got about 100 more lawyered up and can find a way to maintain contact after the mayhem that all be Monday.
But I NEED YOUR HELP.
Please viral this. Please write to your MP. Please send to all your contacts and ask them to give as generously as you have already done.
This is the greatest human rights abuse from UK govt Ive seen in my lifetime. Please use all social media and alt news networks to help me get this out. and get ore people to contribute.
We now have sites
http://calais.gebnet.co.uk/urgent-appeal YOU AN DONATE ON IT
and on Facebook https://www.facebook.com/calaischildren/?pnref=story
Will update the text on both later today, but youre welcome to fwd this email to your trusted lists.
And see my report on http://www.itv.com/news/2016-10-14/calais-children-new-home-in-uk/
Plus interviewed on http://news.sky.com/story/beautiful-day-for-jungle-camp-children-as-they-reach-uk-10621441
Alos see http://www.gold.ac.uk/news/calais-mission/
and for info http://news.sky.com/story/mps-and-peers-demand-action-on-calais-jungle-migrant-camp-10625311
Love to all.