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Chief exec on helping asylum seekers

8 September, 2015

Chief exec on helping asylum seekers

RCM chief executive Cathy Warwick is speaking out about the difficulties faced by pregnant women refused asylum in the UK.

She is today <8 September> giving a talk at the launch of advice for health staff on ‘Housing and financial support for pregnant women who have been refused asylum’ by Maternity Action.

In her talk, Cathy outlines the challenges facing refused asylum seekers trying to get the care they need.

She also touches on the dilemmas for healthcare staff in caring for these women as they try to negotiate the sometimes confusing and obstructive bureaucracy.

She stresses that pregnant refused asylum seekers are some of the most vulnerable people in our society.

And that those that remain in the UK have no status, few rights, few resources and little reason to remain in touch with representatives of the government.

Cathy goes on to stress the need to lobby for improvements to legislation and for midwives to take direct action to ensure that women have the best chance of getting the support to which they are entitled.

She also touches on the current refugee crisis in many European countries, and makes a plea for pregnant women to get access to the care they need.

Cathy appeals to European countries to work together in a coordinated way to ensure ‘fellow human beings are treated with the humanity they should expect from civilised countries’.

A key part of Cathy’s talk is that midwives have an obligation to help these women and simply must not allow themselves to be put into the position of ‘an authority’.

She adds that the NMC Code for nurses and midwives is clear about their duty; that they must act in partnership with those receiving care, helping them to access relevant health and social care, information and support when they need it.

Cathy’s speech is being given today between 2pm and 5pm at Radnor Hall, Wesley’s Chapel, London.

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