Human rights charity calls on government to honour its child refugee promises


JCORE has called on the government to honour its pledge to take in unaccompanied refugee children.

In May the government promised to accept an unspecified number of child refugees after a campaign led by former kindertransport refugee Lord Dubs.

The 84-year-old succeeding in getting the government to accept child refugees from Europe after he refused to accept defeat when MPs voted down his amendment to the Immigration Bill.

However, the human rights charity said the government’s pledge to provide sanctuary to an unspecified number of lone child refugees in Europe, “remains just a promise” and not enough had been done since then to help the thousands of unaccompanied minors.

Edie Friedman, JCORE's executive director, said: "As a nation that prides itself on its humanitarian values, we simply cannot stand by and let innocent children suffer such unspeakable dangers and trauma.”

JCORE has called on the UK to work closely with governments abroad to identify the lone children and encourage local authorities to support them when they are here.

As part of its campaign Let The Children In, the charity is also calling on the government to speed up the process which reunites unaccompanied children with family members already in the UK

JCORE said: “Some 157 unaccompanied children are still waiting in Calais to be reunited with their families in the UK, in accordance with their legal rights. These long delays are unacceptable.”

The charity is now asking the Jewish community to take part in 72 hours of action, from September 5-7.

Participants are being encouraged to email their MPs and the Home Secretary and to tweet about the issue using the hashtag #LetTheChildrenIn.

It added that rabbis across the community are being briefed on the issues and asked to talk about them from the pulpit on September 3.

On September 17, JCORE are expected to lead a Jewish contingent on the Refugees Welcome march.

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