Yesterday, Mount Pleasant Park Football Club staged a mini-football-game-protest outside Vulcan House, the Home Office building in Sheffield, calling for an end to detention, deportation and the whole Hostile Environment.
As the club said in their statement about the action:
“We understand that Vulcan House, the Home Office premises situation in Sheffield city centre, is a place many in our community associate with fear and violence.
They dread having to report there, in the knowledge they can be detained at any time … Detention is a cruel and an unnecessary part of the immigration system.
Theresa May’s hostile environment shows a complete lack of compassion, empathy and is an inexcusable stain on British society. As long as the Home continues to persecute people, we’ll continue to take action.
Today we assembled two teams, along with a rambunctious crowd to stage a demonstration/game of football outside Vulcan House … it was through football that we have met so many people experiencing the hostile environment.
We try and create a small space of welcome and community in this city … We know Vulcan House is not a place people associate with those feelings, and we wanted to reclaim that space.”
The action got a lot of community backing, support online, and even from within the Home Office!
Another community football club – this time in Bristol – also took action yesterday to protest the policy of immigration detention. They had a football match on College Green and handed out flyers, raising local awareness of the Hostile Environment and the harm that immigration control causes.
Actions like this give us real hope – they show that people aren’t willing to tolerate other people being treated with inhumanity and cruelty. That we won’t keep quiet while this is being done. That local communities are rising up, speaking out, and must be heard. These Walls Must Fall.
We’d love to see more of this, all over the UK. Could your local sports team be next?
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