Only Two UK MPs Out of 650 Volunteer to House Ukrainian Refugees
While Parliament has given near-unanimous support for sanctions on Russia that have only increased rampant inflation in the UK, and military aid to Kiev and its neo-Nazi militants, almost none of the hundreds of MPs have put their money where their mouth is and re-homed a Ukrainian refugee family.
Just two of the 650 members of the British parliament have taken in refugees from the conflict in Ukraine.
An article for The House
, the in-house magazine for the House of Commons, could only find two MPs to interview who had signed up
for the government's 'Homes for Ukraine'
Author Sienna Miller called Duncan Baker, the MP for North Norfolk since the 2019 general election, a "rare beast".
Baker and his family took in 34-year-old teacher Anna and her six-year-old son Sviatik after chatting with them on WhatsApp.
Sviatik had been staying with his grandparents in the southern city of Melitopol, which surrendered to Russian forces soon after the launch of the special military operation.
Anna's husband Vitali was able to travel there from the capital Kiev, where he works as a botanist at the university, to bring their son home despite the hostilities.
But Vitali was not allowed to come with them to the UK. President Volodymyr Zelensky's government has banned all men aged 18 to 60 from leaving the country and is conscripting them to replace heavy casualties taken on the eastern front with the Russian-recognised breakaway republics of Donetsk and Lugansk.
"She’s been emotional, seeing all the Ukraine flags flying in the houses as you drive past," Baker said of Anna, describing popular sympathy for Ukraine among British people, even if the vast majority of MPs have been unwilling to put up a refugee family for the government's "thank you payment" of just £350 ($430) a month.
Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer, one of the most vocal supporters of sanctions on Russia and military aid to Kiev, made the excuse that he did not have enough spare room at his £1 million north London house.
Veteran Labour MP for Middlesbrough Andy McDonald was one of several Yorkshire folk who welcomed Ukrainians at the county's Doncaster airport recently.
"It tended to be people of a certain vintage who were receiving people," he said tellingly.
McDonald hosted Tatiana and her two-year-old son Vladik from Lugansk after being put in touch with them by refugee "matchmaker" Maria Tribe, a Cambridge management consultant.
Tatiana's husband Alexey, described in the article as an award-winning physicist and professional photographer who is nonetheless penniless, is “not yet taking up arms” but “will fully expect” to do so in future.
The Labour left-winger wondered why more Britons weren't welcoming refugees from across the globe
into their own homes, musing: "I just think, why can’t we extend this generosity of spirit to others?"
"If you’ve lost your home, you’ve lost your home. It doesn’t matter whether that’s in Ukraine or Syria, Palestine or Yemen," McDonald said. "It doesn’t sit well with me that we’re not being as generous with people fleeing all sorts of atrocities."