A government minister who last week publicly backed a report on
social inclusion has come under fire for allegedly refusing to see
asylum seekers in his constituency surgery.
John Spellar, transport minister and Labour MP for Warley, in the
west Midlands, is only willing to see constituents on the electoral
A Refugee Council spokesperson said: “Many people from vulnerable
groups – not just asylum seekers – are not on the electoral
register. Their needs are very real and, indeed, are acknowledged
by government initiatives tackling social exclusion and cohesion
Sadie Smith, leader of the Liberal Democrats at Sandwell Council,
which covers Warley, said that she did not agree with a blanket ban
on asylum seekers. “If your surgery is overflowing there are ways
of dealing with it,” she said.