Photo Credit: Benny Hunter
On 7th March MPs voted 287-267 to close the Dubs Amendment, and to shut the door on 2650 unaccompanied child refugees living without protection in Europe. More than 60 charities have signed an open letter protesting at the decision. They say:
This is a reprehensible decision.
The Children and Social Work Bill was proposed to have an amendment by MP Heidi Allen, which required the government to assess each local council's space allocation for unaccompanied minors. This is a step that would allow local authorities to make accurate calculations about how many children could be cared for under each local council. This is a step which should have happened far earlier if the government were seriously considering to uphold Dubs beyond the bare minimum.
Worst of all, the argument for upholding the cap of 350 children, is based on incorrect information. Many councils have said they contacted the Home Office about available spaces and a willingness to take in child refugees, but were ignored.
Human Rights advisors have warned that closing the Dubs scheme would lead many minors into the hands of traffickers. If we aren't willing to protect children, what is left?
Home Secretary Amber Rudd has perpetuated misinformed ideas by arguing that Dubs and other transfer schemes act as 'pull factors', that they promote the role of traffickers. These arguments are incorrect, and are used as excuses to neglect these young refugees.
Now, we must be louder than ever in standing up for these children. We cannot let a decision which unconscionably denies safety to hundreds of vulnerable people go unchallenged. We refuse to allow a fearful political climate to allow the UK government to decide that young unaccompanied children who have fled war and conflict seeking refuge in supposedly "safe" Europe, are not worthy of our help or care.
Voices for Child Refugees
The Hummingbird Project
Unofficial Women and Children's Centre in Calais/Meena
Refugee Youth Service
Stand Up to Racism
Dunkirk Legal Support Team
The Worldwide Tribe
Solidarity with Refugees
East Midlands Solidarity
United to Assist Refugees
Boots, Backpacks & Baby Carriers -- Aid for refugees in Chios
Syria Solidarity Campaign
Hastings Supports Refugees
Side by Side with Refugees
Join the Dots Humanitarian Hub, Oxford
Refugee Rights Data Project (RRDP)
Herts for Refugees
Calais Refugee Solidarity Bristol
Fuze Beyond Borders
The Starling Project -- Brighton
Luck of Birth
Lewes Actions for Refugees
The Enthum Foundation
RAISE - Refugee Action in Somerset East
One Human Race
Road to Freedom
Nola Ellen Education and Training
Camden City of Sanctuary
Bras Not Bombs
Marlow Refugee Action
St Albans for Refugees
Herts Welcomes Syrian Families
Amnesty International Chelmsford
Brentwood & Chelmsford Green Party
South Woodham Ferrers Green
Glasgow Campaign to Welcome Refugees
Hope and Aid Direct
Massive Outpouring of Love
UK Action for Refugees