There was much derision when David Cameron announced last year that the UK would welcome 3,000 young, vulnerable, migrant children from war-torn Syria. It was thought that the number was extremely low given the total number involved and the fact that the UK was heavily involved in the war raging in Syria. But, after much debate the target was set.
The British government’s behaviour was rather suspicious when the so called ‘Jungle’ refugee camp was forcibly closed in Calais last October. Instead of processing the children known to be residing there and clearly distressed and vulnerable, the British Home Office staff simply upped sticks and left without any fanfare, explanation or justification – simply disappeared without a ripple! The children, many with family links to the UK, were dispersed by the French authorities into various areas of France and have been either resettled, lost or forgotten. Yesterday in Parliament, believing there to be enough distractions to ensure the news would not gain much purchase, the Home Secretary, Amber Rudd stood and nonchalantly announced the decision to reduce the number of children to be resettled in the United Kingdom to a maximum of 350. A derisory total of 200 have been processed so far in the Britain, so just another 150 will be accepted.
Both Ms. Rudd and the Prime Minister have justified their action stating that more children would make the journey if they believed Britain’s door is open to them and that this would encourage more people traffickers. As politicians are well aware, ‘the best form of defence is attack’ but in this instance they are making themselves appear ignorant.
Chair of the Home Affairs Select Committee, Yvette Cooper said “thousands of child refugees were languishing in camps in Greece and Italy, desperate for help and at risk of abuse, exploitation and modern slavery.”
The outrage was further amplified by comments from Shadow Home Secretary, Diane Abbott; Liberal Democrat leader, Tim Farron ; former child-refugee and the person responsible for the Cameron government’s original commitment, Lord Dubbs. The concern of the Government’s about turn was not restricted to opposition parties with a number of Tory peers and the Archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welby also voicing disapproval. A legal challenge is to be mounted against the government.
Citizenship Limited, through its website www.lifeinukthetest.co.uk offer the only online video course for those taking the Life in the UK Test. Over 3500 new citizens have successfully completed the course and passed the Test. The Company has always sought a policy of transparency from the Government in relation to migrants. They believe that those who are here legally have achieved the right to live peacefully, equally and treated with respect.