Calais Action is delighted at today's announcement from the Home Office that Britain will take in 3,000 child refugees. HOWEVER, we have it confirmed from our sources in Parliament that the policy WILL NOT INCLUDE those child refugees already IN EUROPE. Reports suggest that children will be selected from North Africa and the Middle East - and this means that those in the camps of Calais, Dunkirk, Idomeni, Italy and Greece will remain untouched by this announcement. The children that we meet and see regularly already in the camps of Europe, dirty, cold and at risk from traffickers will NOT benefit.
Worse still, this means that the Government MAY sidestep what promises to be a significant rebellion by his own party over the Dubs Amendment, which has always maintained that 3,000 child refugees should be taken from WITHIN Europe. Save The Children's original call to save 3,000 children was also for those child refugees IN EUROPE to be protected. We must NOT let this happen!!
Calais Action are extremely concerned that this could mean that either the Dubs Amendment will be voted down, or that the Government will be able to claim that there is no scope available to take a "further" 3,000 child refugees from within Europe. They will claim they have fulfilled their humanitarian responsibilities, and that therefore Dubs is no longer needed. It is no accident that this comes on the eve of the Dubs vote on Monday. They could have taken these children from the Middle East and Africa at any time over the past years, - and they still should. But what about those IN Europe?
So in summary: the fight is STILL ON to get Dubs through the Commons! Please could ALL of you write in maintaining that 3,000 children should STILL be protected from Europe!!!
It is a wonderful thing that children fleeing war will be given safety in the UK. And it is a triumph of humanitarianism for those saved - and tribute to the overwhelming strength of public feeling that the Government have acted.
However, we do fear that today's announcement leaves the children of Calais, Dunkirk, Idomeni and Greece who have risked everything to be here - still out in the cold, and with the safe and legal route of the Dubs Amendment potentially closed to them. Don't let this happen! Please write to your MP asking them to SUPPORT THE DUBS AMENDMENT!!
Children in Northern France, Macedonia, Italy and Greece will unfortunately not be helped by today's announcement. The fight is still on to get Dubs through Commons.
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