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To: Theresa May, Prime Minster - UK Government
Ask to Government to stick to their commitment of helping 3,000 unaccompanied child refugees
A key route into the UK for children caught up in Europe's migrant crisis is to close after a total of 350 arrivals.
In a written ministerial statement, the Home Office said it would stop receiving children via the so-called Dubs amendment at the end of March.
The law, designed by peer and former refugee Lord Dubs, aimed to help some of the estimated 90,000 unaccompanied migrant children across Europe.
A legal challenge on how the government has handled the legal commitment will go ahead on Friday.
Responding to the decision, Lord Dubs said: "Britain has a proud history of welcoming refugees. At a time when Donald Trump is banning refugees from America, it would be shameful if the UK followed suit by closing down this route to sanctuary for unaccompanied children just months after it was opened."
"During the Kindertransport, Sir Nicky Winton rescued 669 children from Nazi persecution virtually single-handedly. I was one of those lucky ones. It would be a terrible betrayal of his legacy if as a country we were unable to do more than this to help a new generation of child refugees.
"I urge the prime minister to show leadership by continuing and building on this programme, not shutting the door to some of the most vulnerable refugee children."
Senior Church of England clergy have condemned the decision. He said "There is a huge question over how about 400 is in the spirit of 3,000."
We urge the Government to help at least 3,000 unaccompanied child refugees.
Why is this important?
There is an estimated 90,000 unaccompanied children and teenagers across Europe
Help Refugees, one of the British charities working in France, had already launched legal action against the government's handling of Dubs. Its judicial review, which will be heard on Friday, argues that ministers failed to consult local authorities properly about how many unaccompanied children could be housed.