Re-open the Dubs safe route to Britain for unaccompanied refugee children in Europe.
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Petition to the Prime Minster of the United Kingdom
We call on the Government to honour its legal duty under Section 67 Immigration Act 2016 (the Dubs Amendment) to re-open the Dubs safe route to Britain for unaccompanied refugee children in Europe. We ask the Prime Minister not to abandon vulnerable children in our name.
The Dubs Amendment refers to an amendment to the 2016 UK Immigration Act tabled by Lord Alf Dubs. It has since been incorporated into the law, as Section 67 of the Immigration Act 2016. It is known as the ‘Dubs scheme’.
The amendment stated that: “The Secretary of State must, as soon as possible after the passing of this Act, make arrangements to relocate to the United Kingdom and support a specified number of unaccompanied refugee children from other countries in Europe.” Opening safe and legal routes would save lives.
However, the scheme was brought to a premature end in early February by the UK Government. In total, 480 unaccompanied minors will be brought to the UK under the Dubs amendment, far less than the 3,000 which had originally been envisaged.
So far, only 200 unaccompanied minors have been brought to the UK
However, after the passage of the Amendment the government did nothing. No children were transferred under the scheme between May and October 2016. According to the charity Help Refugees, even now, more than half of the identified spaces remain unfilled – meaning that eligible children have needlessly spent two winters sleeping in camps, or on the streets.
Only 350 places and only 150 places remain for all children from the rest of Europe, including Greece where freezing conditions in refugee camps led to three deaths in one week this January.
(petition created by the Faversham and Villages Refugee Solidarity Group- https://www.facebook.com/groups/1014751031898187/
From the Help Refugees website (https://helprefugees.org/)
The dangers faced by unaccompanied children are terrible. 200 children are sleeping without any shelter in Calais. Refugees regularly have their blankets and possessions seized by police or sprayed with tear gas, so they can’t use them, so refugees are taking greater risks in order to reach the UK: in three weeks, at the end of last year, three people lost their lives at the border – including a 15-year-old boy.
In Greece and Italy, children are sleeping in squats and on the streets, leaving them at acute risk of exploitation. Many children go missing after registration and all who are not under any kind of formal protection are at risk from child traffickers.
Our government has a legal and moral duty to help these children.
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