I understand your concerns about support for refugees, and agree that English language funding is vital for ensuring that refugees can integrate into British society.
Arriving in an unfamiliar country, not speaking the language and having been potentially traumatised is not the end of the journey for many refugee families. Integrating into a new society is challenging, and I believe it is important that we ensure support is available until individuals have found their feet in our communities.
I am therefore delighted that last year the Home Office awarded £1 million to the civil society organisation Reset to provide training and support to help communities across the UK that want to welcome refugees through the community sponsorship resettlement initiative.
I am delighted that contributions are being made at all levels of society, whether it is the encouraging work of the UK Government, or Scotland’s strategy to teach English to speakers of other languages, which extends as far as 2020.
I believe it is important to provide asylum seekers with basic amenities, but Scotland could do more. During the asylum seeking process we need to ensure that we do not put people’s lives on hold, waste their skills or prevent them from developing as people. It is really important we give them the chance to show us their talents, to move forward in their lives and to integrate, as best we can.
Last updated January 2020