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Recorder letters: Abandoned cats, Bomber Command memorial, EU citizens and FGM

PUBLISHED: 12:00 10 February 2019

The first box opened contained three cats. Picture: CELIA HAMMOND TRUST

The first box opened contained three cats. Picture: CELIA HAMMOND TRUST

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Letters, contributions and comments sent in from Recorder readers this week.

Cruel to dump cats in boxes with no air holes

A Stratford resident and animal lover, full name and address supplied, writes:

I would like to say to the person who left the cats in boxes with boxes with no air holes – what a wicked thing to do!

I wonder if they would like it done to them? No animal deserves to die like that.

Luckily they were found in time. If anyone else is thinking of doing such a thing I hope they ring animal charities to take them. If you don’t like or want animals, don’t have them in the first place. But don’t ill treat them – that is pure evil.

I do hope someone finds it in their heart to forgive them because I certainly wouldn’t.

Thanks for all your support

Air Vice-Marshal David Murray, chief executive, RAF Benevolent Fund, writes:

Last month’s vandalism at the Bomber Command Memorial highlighted the very worst and the very best of our communitie

I cannot thank your readers enough for their incredible support in the wake of this shocking paint attack.

To date we have received more than £25,000 in donations to help the RAF Benevolent Fund meet the repair bill. Repair works have now been completed on the memorial and it is now returned to its former glory.

As well as the donations received, the RAF Benevolent Fund had thousands of messages of support from around the world. It was heart-warming to see how well the memorial, the veterans and the 55,573 men it stands to represent are thought of.

We must never forget their sacrifices and the RAF Benevolent Fund is proud to be the guardian of this tribute to their legacy, for generations to come.

As the fund enters its 100th year of support for the RAF family, we must not forget those veterans who are still with us. Our aim this year is to ask for the public’s help in reaching more of these veterans and their families, while we still can.

Our support could help pay for the care costs of an RAF widow, or provide for mobility aids to keep an elderly veteran at home, or simply allow a veteran to enjoy his retirement in dignity and comfort, through a regular financial grant. If you know someone in need of support, contact our free support line 0800 169 2942 or email mail@rafbf.org.uk

EU citizens’ rights clearer

Syed Kamall, Conservative MEP for London, writes:

The many citizens of EU countries living here in London have been understandably concerned about what Brexit will mean for them, but I hope they can take comfort from a document published recently telling them how things will work.

The government’s advice confirms that much will remain the same for EU citizens, regardless of the outcome of negotiations. They will, for example, continue to be able to access services and benefits as a comparable UK national.

It explains that there will be some necessary changes. For example, only EU citizens living here by March 29, 2019 will be able to obtain settled status and they must do so by December 31, 2020. The prime minister has recently announced that no fee will be payable.

After a three year transition period, EU citizens’ rights to family reunion will be brought into line with those of UK nationals and non-EU nationals. Notably, the advice promises a digital service to provide help for applicants completing their application form online - and later a telephone and face-to-face service.

Details will be published on the government website at gov.uk/government/publications. I hope anyone who may be worried will check the advice.

Protect young from FGM

John Cameron, head of Helplines, NSPCC, writes:

Talking about Female Genital Mutilation (FGM) can make people feel uncomfortable but only by breaking the silence can we protect children from this form of child abuse which involves the partial or total removal of external female genitalia.

That’s why this International Day of Zero Tolerance for Female Genital Mutilation (Wednesday, February 6) I am urging your readers to report their concerns to the NSPCC’s FGM Helpline.

Victims are usually aged between four and 10, but some are babies. There are no medical benefits. Religious, social or cultural reasons are often given but it can be extremely dangerous.

If you suspect a child is at risk of, or has had FGM call the NSPCC’s FGM helpline on 0800 028 3550 or email fgmhelp@nspcc.org.uk. Children can call Childline on 0800 1111.

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