Hundreds of people marched through Croydon on Saturday 8 April in a display of unity with refugees in the wake of the horrific attack on 17-year-old Kurdish refugee Reker Ahmed.
Chanting "refugees welcome here", the protesters were joined by representatives from local campaigns and faith groups including Croydon Assembly, Croydon Trades Council and Croydon Disabled People Against Cuts, as well as local trade union branches Croydon NUT, Croydon College UCU and Unite Retired Members. Campaigners from Keep Our St Helier Hospital joined the protest to highlight the importance of migrant workers in the NHS.
The event was organised by campaigning group, Stand Up to Racism, who were outraged by the "tragedy" of Reker Ahmed, who escaped a war zone to be attacked in Croydon. "We have to make sure that we welcome refugees and treat them with respect because it's how we would like to be treated if we were refugees."
Ilayda Tuzun, a Croydon resident, member of the Kurdish community and local anti-racism activist said: "I was so happy when I saw Stand Up to Racism were organising something in response to the attack. The protest achieved its purpose of coming together to stand in unity against racism. Raising awareness for the refugees who are in this country, not through choice, but through disastrous circumstances is a fact people should not dismiss readily."