The CSP has introduced a new, free membership category for international physiotherapists and physio students who are seeking asylum in the UK.
CSP Council has decided to set up the new special membership type to help physiotherapy staff and students who have been displaced from their own countries and are either seeking asylum in the UK or have been granted humanitarian visas.
Previously overseas trained physios seeking asylum in the UK had no route to link to the UK physiotherapy community. This will enable them to maintain access to professional development.
The special membership category will provide all of the same benefits that intentional CSP affiliate members currently receive, but it will be free as asylum seekers are not allowed to work in the UK.
These new membership changes will also provide cover to Ukrainian physical therapists and physiotherapy students who may come to the UK after being displaced by the current conflict.
International solidarity with Ukraine
The CSP has expressed our solidarity with Ukraine and especially with the Ukrainian Association of Physical Therapy (UAPT) and with rehab workers in Ukraine.
We have also donated to the International TUC fund to support our sister organisations in Ukraine.
And last week the CSP successfully moved a motion on Ukraine at the TUC Women’s Conference.
CSP director of policy Rob Yeldham said: ‘We continue to support the TUC and World Physiotherapy solidarity initiatives. World Physiotherapy are developing plans to support rehab in the wider region, in recognition of the long-term impacts the war will have.
‘Looking ahead to recovery has also been raised by unions and, most importantly, we are trying to maintain contact with the Ukraine Association for Physical Therapy.’
Information on UK asylum and migration routes, and CSP membership for those seeking asylum can be found here
The CSP is also working to help members of the Ukraine Association for Physical Therapy (UAPT) who may wish to use the UK sponsorship scheme.
‘We are prevented by law from offering individual advice on immigration and asylum,’ Rob Yeldham said.
‘So, we are working on ways to link UAPT members directly with CSP members who may want to host them.
So far around 30 CSP members have registered interest in hosting Ukrainian physios
‘What we don’t yet known is how much demand there will be and even whether the information is able to get through to colleagues in the Ukraine.’
Information about how CSP members can support asylum-seeking and displaced physios can be found here
Supporting refugee physios into practice
Prior to the Russian invasion of Ukraine, the CSP was already working with Health Education England and the Department of Health on supporting refugee physios to gain HCPC accreditation and access work, and this work is ongoing.
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