01 Mar 2022

The BDA condemns the illegal invasion of a sovereign nation and calls for Russia to respect Ukrainian territorial integrity. We deplore the loss of life that has been incurred due to the Russian assault.

We are mindful of the impact on BDA members and fellow NHS colleagues who have friends and family in the region. We know that our members will be keen to assist those people who have been displaced and are suffering. It is for this reason that we are encouraging support for the British Red Cross who are currently aiding refugees in the area. They have launched a Ukraine Crisis Appeal to assist their efforts.

We join the global union movement in calling for peace and urge all governments to reach a negotiated solution through diplomacy, including a return to the framework of the Minsk agreements, to bring about peace, democracy, security, and human and trade union rights for all in Europe, Ukraine and Russia.

The humanitarian consequences for civilians must be urgently addressed and international humanitarian law must be respected. We support the UNHCR’s calls for neighbouring governments to keep borders open to all those that need safety and call on our own government to play its part in supporting humanitarian assistance for forcibly displaced people and to welcome refugees seeking to come to the UK. In particular we call on the UK government to waive visa requirements for those seeking refuge from the conflict.

Working people always suffer in conflict and the pursuit of peace is a fundamental trade union value, an essential condition to secure safety, social justice and workers’ and human rights.

We send our solidarity to our Ukrainian trade union sisters and brothers and all the people of Ukraine; we know that working people in Europe, Ukraine and Russia want peace and we encourage solidarity between workers across borders.

The BDA supports all efforts which lead to peace and social justice.