Monday, September 17, 2007

The Price of a Visa

Visas usually cost about £30, right? Not if you are an African person coming to work in the UK. We'd thought, having paid for Work Permits and couriered them to Ghana, that there would be no problem when our performers went to the High Commission to get their passports stamped. How wrong we were. It costs more than £200 for each individual to get a working visa. Compare this with the minimal costs to people from European countries and the like. So - there's another way in which we institutionalise racism in this country. And people wonder why there are still cases of human trafficking, why the Morecombe cockle pickers happened......

Kate and I dash around town trying to sort out a way of getting the funds to Ghana fast. In the end, I have to take cash from my personal account and send it as a MoneyGram. This never feels very safe, so I'm mightily relieved when Dzifa sends a text to say she's collected it. Meanwhile, we confirm Colman Getty as our PR agents for the show (another of Elsie's brilliant contacts), have a meeting with Graeme at the Africa Centre to finalise arrangements about keys and so on, and hire a wonderful stage manager called Fiona Shepherd, having advertised the position in Arts Jobs.

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