I have been away at a conference, and the two posts which I have published today were both written before I left. There will be much more in due course, including an account of the event itself.
Meanwhile, my attention back in my office has been diverted not only by the aftermath of my 10,000 mile round trip with everything which that brings, but also by an appeal launched by Sean Jones QC to raise money for Save the Children to help refugees. Just watching the numbers go up has been a full-time task.
Sean Jones launched the appeal last night, as I write this less than 24 hours later, the contributions stand at nearly £45,000 from 333 donations, 591% of Sean’s original target (see the end of this article for updated figures).
There are a wide range of views as to the responsibility for the plight of the refugees, and many more about the policy decisions which must be taken for their longer term future. The debate is not helped by those who focus more on the terminology than on the problem – we are discouraged from even talking about the subject by people who jump on and criticise every allegedly inapt expression used to describe these people and their plight – I doubt that they care whether they are called “migrants” or “refugees” when they are drowning. The politicians will be abused whatever they do by people who give no thought to the conflicting pressures and the realpolitik. There is little recognition for the fact that changing circumstances warrant changed positions.
Whatever the rights and wrongs of past conduct and whatever the wider policy implications for the future, there are children in dire straits. Sean Jones has marshalled his formidable eloquence and his networking skills (go ahead and criticise me for the use of that term) to round up contributions from a profession which is often criticised for alleged indifference to others.
The Just Giving page for the Lawyers’ Billable Hour Appeal is here. The sum raised has increased by over £3,500 since I started writing this.