(Thanks to Safe PAssaging for drafting this excellent letter!)
Dear [recipient name will go here],
Please watch this short video from Young Leaders from the Hummingbird Refugee Project and Safe Passage https://youtu.be/oOQDy78K8cE
I am writing to you to ask you to support Amendment NC29 to the Immigration Bill - supported by Conservative, Labour, SNP and Liberal Democrat MPs - by adding your name and voting for it on Tuesday 30 June.
Without this amendment, I am deeply worried that at the end of the Brexit transition period, child refugees in Europe will lose the ability to reunite with family members in the UK. Coupled with the recent closing of the 'Dubs' scheme, we are facing a situation where child refugees have no safe, legal routes to the UK, pushing them into the hands of people smugglers.
When it removed family reunion protections in the EU Bill in January 2020, the UK Government promised to protect child refugees in its negotiations with the EU. However the draft negotiating text (https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/886020/DRAFT_Agreement_on_the_transfer_of_unaccompanied_asylum-seeking_children.pdf) would mean the end of family reunion as we know it. It is discretionary, is missing essential protections, and could leave hundreds of refugees left stranded in camps despite having family here in the UK.
Amendment NC29 would secure these rights for child and vulnerable refugees, as well as ensuring a replacement for the 'Dubs' scheme.
I understand that last winter, Ministers told Conservative MPs that the Government intended to replace the protections removed in January in this Immigration Bill. The Prime Minister also said in the Commons that he was committed to receiving unaccompanied children. But now the Bill is here, and there is nothing for child refugees.
I therefore ask you to please stand up for child refugees by backing Amendment NC29 and giving children a safe, legal alternative to risking their lives in a lorry.
250+ faith leaders recently wrote to the Prime Minister about this issue just last week. You can read more about it in the Daily Mail here: https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-8441221/Former-Archbishop-Canterbury-faith-leaders-calling-lone-migrant-children-protection.html.
Tim Loughton MP and Yvette Cooper MP also set out the reasons for this amendment in the Times here: https://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/child-refugees-could-lose-their-safest-routes-to-sanctuary-h2hmthlnx