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1. City of Sanctuary is a mainstream, grassroots movement.

Local groups work to build coalitions of organisations from all sectors (faith groups, voluntary, business, education, etc) which make a public commitment to welcome and include refugees and people seeking sanctuary in their usual activities. Local working groups should be representative of different sectors, not just refugee organisations, and the endorsement of local government should be sought on the basis of demonstrated community support, rather than being a ‘top-down’ council initiative.

2. City of Sanctuary works by creating opportunities for relationship between local people and those seeking sanctuary.

Where local organisations and communities include people seeking sanctuary in their activities, personal relationships will be formed which will lead to greater understanding and support from the host community. City of Sanctuary seeks to influence the political debate on sanctuary through cultural change, through a commitment to awareness raising right across society, and through the many partnerships we enjoy throughout and beyond the refugee sector.

3. City of Sanctuary offers a positive vision of a culture of hospitality for those in need of safety.

We encourage communities to take pride in offering a place of safety for people whose lives are threatened, and celebrating their contribution to our towns and cities. The focus is on those people who are forced to seek sanctuary rather than voluntary migration or diversity in general. At the same time we intend that the process of working for a culture of hospitality will also benefit other migrant groups, as well as host communities.

Find out more about the City of Sanctuary movement across the UK and Ireland