A charity has accused the Government of performing a “shocking and devastating backtrack” by limiting the number of child refugees accepted into Britain under the Dubs scheme to just 350
Care4Calais warned that more unaccompanied minors were arriving to bleaker-than-ever conditions in the French port town.
But despite this, the Government announced that only a small portion of the anticipated 3,000 child refugees would be accepted into the UK from Europe under the scheme.
The refugee crisis charity called on ministers to reverse the cap as they accused them of “turning their backs” on child refugees fleeing “unthinkable violence”.
Since the “Jungle” camp was torn down, child refugees have been sleeping rough in the streets where they are at a heightened risk of being trafficked.
Sue Jex, head of UK operations at Care4Calais, said: “The scheme has been in place for less than a year, during which time the UK Government has failed to take in even a third of those children who were originally considered under the scheme.
“The problem has not gone away, refugees – including unaccompanied minors – are continuing to arrive in Calais every day, and are now living in conditions far worse than those of last year’s jungle.
“We would urge the Government to rethink its decision and act now to urgently bring these children to safety.”
Immigration minister Robert Goodwill quietly announced the cap on the Dubs scheme on Wednesday.
Named after its architect, the Labour peer Alf Dubs, the scheme requires the Government to relocate unaccompanied refugee children from across Europe.
The charity’s cries have added to a growing chorus of protest against the decision.
Critics include the Archbishop of Canterbury and Barbara Winton, the daughter of Sir Nicholas Winton, who was hailed “Britain’s Schindler” after saving hundreds of children from Nazi tyranny.
The Home Office insisted it was not giving up on vulnerable children and said youngsters would arrive from around the world through other resettlement schemes and the asylum system.