£40 million support package. Our proposal.
Chagossian Voices has been lobbying the FCDO for two years to ensure that the £40 million support package announced in 2016 is spent in the best interests of all Chagossians.
Here is our latest proposal sent to the FCDO in June 2016:
Chagossian Voices Proposal for the £40 million and in particular for the Chagossians registering as UK citizens under the Nationality and Borders Act
June 30th 2022
Chagossians who are applying for and who are granted British citizenship should be offered the following – both before and after migrating to the UK:
- Support and tuition in English language
- Advice and guidance on accessing housing and accommodation
- Education and training to provide skills and knowledge for employment
- Information about life in the UK including accessing health care, education, social services, education, training and employment
- Financial support, particularly during the first three months in the UK
- Information about support available in the UK, including that provided by both civil society (Citizens Advice and charities), public authorities and central government.
- Earmarked support for those providing services for Chagossians, including education providers, health providers, social services, housing authorities – support should include specialist knowledge of the community and Kreol language skills
- A community centre and an online community portal for all Chagossians must to be created.
- Support for travel to the UK is welcome but at the discretion of ministers.
Fairness to all Chagossians
- Chagossians who have migrated to the UK up to now have done so at their own expense and have not benefited from any support. What is made available to the new cohort of migrants must be similarly available to those who have migrated , those yet to migrate, and those who chose not to migrate, in particular native islanders.
- The £40 million package was made available to all Chagossians, wherever they are in the world, so equal opportunities for support need to made available for them, especially native islanders
- Up to now it has been impossible to request personal support for Chagossians. If this changes, in order to support the new cohort of Chagossians, such individual support must be made available to all Chagossians: eg funeral grants which have previously been rejected.
- It must be made simpler for Chagossians to bid for money from the £40 million package. Up until 2020 there was no system in place and from 2020 ,the terms of the call for bids have made it impossible for any Chagossian community groups or individuals to bid. This needs to change